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Wouldn’t Providing More Employment Opportunities Be A Better Alternative To The Food Security Bill?

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By Shaifali Agrawal:

The implementation of the ambitious National Food Security Bill, 2013 by the Government of India makes me contemplate on how far can selfish motives be implemented against the whole country, that too in a disguise of it being a saviour. The Bill will legally entitle 67% of the population (i.e 82 crore people, 75 percent rural and 50 percent urban) of India to get subsidised grains.

food securi

Is it a vote-mongering activity since elections are due next year? It has been called as a “vote security” bill by some. Even the opposition party BJP did not ask for any amendments or withdrawal of its implementation in a parliament session held a few days back, because that would make them look like they go against the poor.

Why isn’t government providing people with jobs, which would make people start to appreciate the work of sweat, instead of enjoying the food at negligible prices and spending the rest of the money on liquor. Even the government would benefit from the power of the working hand if it provides such a large population with employment, instead of spending some 25,000 crore on food distribution across the country. It would be a win-win situation.

This huge sum of money could and should be used for the actual benefits of the people that would strengthen the democracy, or India’s economic position in the world. Like in health sector, providing people with new and good hospitals in which an average hospital would employ a minimum of forty people consisting of doctors, nurses, janitor, watchmen, etc. who would then be self sufficient to buy food grains at normal prices. In the education sector, with building new schools and providing financial backup for education to poor families. In the Sports sector with introducing coaching of different sports in the country apart from cricket which would, in twenty years’ time, give rise to people bagging laurels at national level, maybe. And if the Government does not want to do anything, it would be advisable to let the money sit in the stocks of Reserve Bank of India to be used in moments of crisis like now, when the value of rupee has been very unstable; and if even that is not required, why don’t they just decrease the amount of taxes, or nay, just stop introducing new ones.

Moreover, for how long can the Government implement this scheme? For how many subsequent years would the country be in a position to spend around 1.27 lakh crore every year (Also, it might not be in the interest of the UPA government to continue the scheme any more after the first few months of its selection as the ruling party)?. But if comparative resources are used to make people self sufficient by providing them with well-paying jobs, it would help eradicate poverty. Moreover, the loans taken for generating employment would reap benefits and the money spent in it would be paid back after a few years, it would also undoubtedly start reaping profits after a while if the money, man power, and resources are diligently and un-corrupt-edly used; which would definitely not be the case with the Food Bill which has no long-term benefits (but oh! Five years is a good enough time).

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  1. K.B.Srivastava

    To generate more employment Robot army and drone should be deputed at borders and police personnel and soldiers should be provided bullet proof jackets to cover whole body. Fighter plane, drone, robot army etc. should be made in India and if number of judges and its staff and female constables are increased as per norms of America (21 times) problem of pending court cases, unemployment and female security will be solved. For this purpose there is no need for separate budget, but budget sanctioned for social welfare may be utilised for payment of salaries. For example in financial year 2013-14, GOI has sanctioned Rs6.385kharab for Indira Awas Yojna, Rs19.2726kharab for Sarva Sikchha Abhiyan, Rs9.0155kharab for Mid Day Meal, Rs4.8642kharab for National Social Assistance, Rs25kharab for National Health Mission, Rs7.6678kharab for Integrated Child Development Service, Rs2.9006kharab for National Rural Livelihood Mission, Rs13.50kharab for Food Security and Rs1.8kharab for subsidy on fuel, Grand total of all amounts is Rs101.30855kharab. Although these amounts are sanctioned for different schemes and in different heads but all amounts are for welfare of poor families of India and not for development. Under Food Security Bill, Government of ;India has counted 5 members in a family & GOI is expecting that 82crore people(16.40crore families whose vote elect government) will be benefitted under this scheme. In my opinion the families whose income is less than Rs15000/- per month are poor and 16.40Cr families (82Cr people whose vote make government) are really poor. If these amounts are transferred in accounts of 16.5-Cr poor families of India (82crore people), each family will receive Rs5147/- per month+Rs400/- of gas subsidy which has already been transferred in accounts of poor families by our honourable UPA government and if State Governments add its 50% share, each poor family will receive Rs11094/- per month and if government seize black money of Rs250/-kharab and its interest is also paid as pension to 16.40Cr poor families then each family will be getting Rs11094+1214=12308/- per month. If poor families get so much money each month, they will be able to get their children admitted in good and private schools and poor patients will also be able to get them treated in private and good hospitals. And if these amounts are not transferred in accounts of 16.40Cr families (82Cr people whose vote make government), then due to corruption, all amounts will be embezzled by the government employees. Sri Rajeev Gandhi, our former Prime Minister had observed that out of Re1/- beneficiaries get only 15 paisa. Hence direct benefits transfer (DBT) is must. There are 12.1Cr unemployed in India and if we pay salaries to unemployed with money sanctioned for social welfare, we can employ 16.50Cr people, but we have got only 12.1Cr unemployed. It means that the amounts sanctioned for social welfare are much more than unemployed in our country. We should appreciate our UPA government that it has already been started direct cash transfer of gas subsidy (DBT) in 172 district and it is expected that by 2014 all districts of India will be covered. Since freedom enough amounts are sanctioned by the government to abolish poverty, but due to leakage in system poor people get nothing, but the same money is embezzled by the government employees. If direct benefits transfer(DBT) had been implemented poverty and unemployment of India had already been abolished. Therefore, I request Central and State Governments to send the same in accounts of poor families directly. In the ancient times also King Raja Ram Chandra Ji used to give at several occasions 5-5 gold coins to poor people from treasury. And if government want to employ the unemployed the government has not to seek fund but fund sanctioned for social welfare may be utilised for payment of salaries to 12.1Cr unemployed person.

  2. Anurag

    Fully Satisfied UPA is just playing vote bank politics to gain the votes of poor people(as they think) even in country like India where there is no infrastructure for public distribution system it cant be possible and we all will see its impact in coming future

  3. Aditi Thakker

    There was the NREGS scheme for employment, and nothing changed. Workers still await payment for jobs done years ago. The Food Security Bill is just going to be yet another scam, more accounts in swiss banks and of course, the aspect of vote bank politics is always there. I was asking my domestic helper, who hails from a remote village in Bihar, if he knew about this scheme and what he thought. The sad reply, “They haven’t even given me a ration card in so many years, these government schemes never make any difference”

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