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Analysis

Indian Policy Makers and Inequality

It is quite distressing to learn that there are more poor people in eight states of India than in the twenty-six countries of sub-Saharan Africa, a study reveals by an international agency. The big states like Bihar and Uttar Pradesh are the worst among these. The study indicates that these two states have high child mortality while abysmal nutrition, child enrolment, drinking water and sanitation, and people’s standard of living. The comparison of the state of Madhya Pradesh with that sub-Saharan nation of Congo shows similar nutritional deprivation. These findings will reinforce claims that distribution of the wealth generated by India’s rapid economic growth, recently around 10% year on year, is deeply unequal.

It appears that Indian policy makers while promising stars, alas, they got this shocking moon. Consequently, everyone come by road or rail but our economists travel on infrastructure. It is pretty exciting to see that ‘economics is the only field in which two people can share a Nobel Prize for saying opposing things’. We don’t think that much change comes from economists. We think it comes more from political realities. People who are rich find it hard to understand the behavior of poor people and the country planners find it hard to determine the choices that poor people make.

Still rural populace lack the bare minimum essential life necessities like health care, clean drinking water and two full square meals a day, pain is the India’s collective GDP.

Several international reports indicate India’s dismal transformation in the poverty eradication policy. The nation is virtually turned into the epithet of cattle class combined of holy, super and wagon. After sixty-five odd years of independence there is still no concrete population control policy and in the next fifteen years we will surpass China to be most populous country along with about seventy five percent of the globe’s starving masses. Our abysmal track record at ensuring basic levels of nutrition is the greatest contributor to poverty. Our distinctive food package that is known as ‘thaali’ only remains with a meager bowl of daal and few rotis.

A typical traditional Indian ‘thaali’ means full of nutritional values that includes: roti, rice, daal, milk/curd/mattha, different curries of vegetables and salads followed by a bowl of kheer. But with the constant price rise, now a days, what we are having everybody is aware of it. With each passing days we are forced to cut down food expenses at the cost of jeopardizing our own health. The question is why and who is responsible for this appalling scene? Is it our ruling entities or planners or poor governance? Do our planners only concern about capital, labor and productivity? Only explaining when, how and why a country grows.

Our armchair planners have never learnt what poverty means. Our planning commission lives in cyber space and the only factor, they have learnt to use is the Gross Domestic Product. They speculate country’s GDP with the constant rising of corporate honchos and their wealth. For them India is growing astonishingly because the numbers of crorepatis have been risen along with the sale of cars, LCD TVs, ACs, android phones, washing machines and other electronics items in the market. Actually, markets work well with goods that economists call private goods.

…India is a mobile-fast country…will grow from mobile phones to computers along with GDP where we will drink calls, eat datas, boost RAM and sleep with power saver. India needs to be liberated from both GDP and android.

In our country, which is claiming to become the second economic power in the world, the GDP is contributed by only 20 percent of the total population, and what about the remaining eighty percent? Still rural populace lack the bare minimum essential life necessities like health care, clean drinking water and two full square meals a day, pain is the India’s collective GDP. Every successive government in power gave enormous industrial subsidies to corporate houses to set up industrial hubs at the cost of cutting the subsidy of common people’s items. Policy jerks are only concern about pay and perks strictly nothing for low wage earners. The implementing agencies of poverty projects are the most inefficient along with the politicians who treat the poverty alleviation measures as a gimmick for winning elections.

In reality, we have a poor kind of policy that only works backward. As some say India is a mobile-fast country and one day it will be a mobile-only country for all time. In the process our country will grow from mobile phones to computers along with GDP where we will drink calls, eat datas, boost RAM and sleep with power saver. India needs to be liberated from both GDP and android. We have a government that does business with businessmen; concurrently we have poor people who do business with themselves that which government will give more freebies to them. At the end both pretend to be happier wherever actually no one is happy.

Since seventy years we are yet to develop courage by being happy every day. We develop it by surviving difficult times and challenging adversity. Consequently, we are blessed with an ICU support system of world top richest people and feel proud of our friend’s friend association like Facebook’s common friends. Here we strangely do not know before and won’t be in future. It is because Facebook’s motto says it is always free and it will be. Delete me, poke me, like me, limit me, the choice is yours- still you can’t ignore me- welcome to Facebook alas means Government, where no one is really your friend. After all our intelligence is our government’s common sense, here common to all sense to none. Trust me every successive government is a storyteller. Recollect your childhood days where every night you used to get a sound snooze after listening to a good numbers of fairytales from your grandma’s memories.

The Author: Dr. Panchanan Bhoi  is a New Delhi based researcher and writer. He has been awarded a Ph.D from the School of Social Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. Also, the author is an alumnus of Indian Institute of Mass Communication and The Indian Law Institute, New Delhi. He may be contacted at dr.pancha.bhoi@gmail.com

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