MyVoice: Views of our readers 23rd May 2022
Build India, don't destroy itIn every sphere India is packed with enough burning problems. The economy of the country continues to suffer and it may ta...
Build India, don't destroy it
In every sphere India is packed with enough burning problems. The economy of the country continues to suffer and it may take quite some years to register even a modest growth as explained by many experts in the field. Closure of firms is still not in check and millions continue to lose jobs. Already unemployment is touching a never touched height. Cost of living is the only thing that continues to register erratic increase. Ever increasing cost of essential commodities is further worsening the owes of the poor and the middle class. Continuous increase in the cost of fuel like Petrol, Diesel and Gas is virtually adding fuel to the fire of owes.
It is in this background people are again subjected to bear with the steep hike in the tariff of power, property tax, mass transport and so on. The claim of the Finance Minister, "the growing inflation affects the rich and not the poor," looks more as mockery than either as explanation or as an effort to assuage the victims. The growth in exports fail to enthuse anyone in the background of further growth in the imports resulting in further increase in balance of trade. The dwindling value of Rupee against the U.S. Dollar will have its telling effect in the overall economic status of the country.
The government boasts of record increase in GST collections. The government has availed loans in the last 8 years to the tune of Rs.10 lakh crores per year. Selling Public Sector Undertakings and Enterprises is claimed to be another lucrative source of funds to the Government. These inputs are besides receipts in PM CARES and its likes. With such fabulous income the country is supposed to present phenomenal growth in every sphere. But surprisingly neither positive change in the economy nor any developmental projects are visible. But even in this disturbed period there are individuals whose assets are said to grow at astronomical speed displaying the glaring disparity and the fact that the resources are being allowed to be amassed by a few.
A situation like this calls for focus on ensuring war foot efforts to improve the condition. But unfortunately persons concerned are quoting Covid19 or Ukraine war as cause for the deterioration, which everyone knows as false narrative.
To avoid people realising the failures, inefficiencies and misdeeds of the ruling dispensation communal issues are being brought to the fore one after one which cannot be the priority of the country at this juncture.
But history has clear lessons to tell that such tactics can yield only short term political benefit but with long term adverse social and economic impacts. It is time to focus on development
and definitely not on distraction of attention or destruction of social fabric.
A G Rajmohan, Anantapur
Should Muslims stop playing the victim card?
This refers to the article 'Fault lines widening amongst Muslin leaders' by Asad Mirza. On the face of it the write-up seems to elucidate genuine concerns and feelings of Muslims in the country, in which the political leadership of the community failed to play the role in ensuring tangible, constructive and democratic roadmap as they are embroiled in petty regional and irresponsible religious issues, striking a working relation with the political parties in power in the country, for their social and financial survival.
There is no need for the community to live under a sense of siege mentality to be apprehensive of others which is born of lack of trust and reciprocal mindset; and this sort of mentality takes birth when there is lack of education and productive employment, to be under the diktat of regional leaders and self-serving dadas of the area, who use them as cannon fodder for narrow political agenda and programmes; by whipping passions against their religious groups, with a view to show united strength of the community, even against beneficial and advantageous programmes like CAA, triple talaq and Common Civil Code, in which women and children become part of the agitation to gain sympathy.
The Muslim community in India can hope to come out of the morass by giving up the Islamic traditional way of teaching and imparting education in Madrasas , in which there is more focus on religious bigotry that eludes rational traditional education and scientific temper miserably eluding student to become unfit in the fast evolving society milieu in terms of availing employment opportunities, to get sidelined in social system, to opt for jobs, that gradually lead to financial and other social frustrations.
The Islamist organisations take advantage of such elements in the community as a section of the youth in the country is showing propensity to be part of these jihadi groups that are operating outside India, from states like Kerala and other parts of the country. The author cited the recently held conference at Hyderabad in which varied views were expressed by speakers that did not pave the way for the community in becoming one monolith religion due to religious denominational differences, and by having a reactive mentality rather than evolving a proactive strategy.
But, the vital and indisputable reality that the community must remember and learn is to be inclusive in the overall milieu of Indian society, not to play a victim card, without always swearing on the Constitutional provisions to prove their point, however unacceptable their acts and talks may be - while not fully amenable to judicial prudence of courts when the verdicts are pronounced to look askance.
K V Raghuram, Wayanad
Ensuring uniformity in GST implementation
As Apex Court's 3-Judge ruled that recommendations of GST Council are not binding on the union and state governments on the ground that it only disrupts fiscal federalism especially when both parliament and legislatures possess equal powers to legislate on GST brings relief to non-BJP ruled states who were on the agitational path with the Centre over the question of releasing their share of GST. Further, the court stressed that recommendations of GST Council are only recommendatory in nature and having only a persuasive value, it helps foster cooperative federalism cannot be overlooked.
However, at the same time, GST been a landmark reform initiative having removed multiple central and state taxes thereby enabling ease of doing business after coming into force in 2017 with GST council chaired by union finance minister and representatives of all states been the decision-making body on all key matters such as tax rates and other matters, the ruling has raised a host of issues and doubts over continuation of GST in its present form.
Notwithstanding that GST council met as many as 46 times in the last five years and only after intense deliberations each time, the decisions taken were by and large unanimous after taking into account divergent views and balancing it in the interest of both Centre and the states cannot be ignored. All in all, the ruling coming at a time when states have been concerned about managing the fiscal situation once the compensation cess provided to defray revenues losses on account of GST comes to an end in June this year has given a rude jolt to the union government who are left with no option but to file a review petition to ensure the level of uniformity in GST legislation presently in force across states continues without hiccups.
K R Srinivasan, Secunderabad
The small farmer needs to be protected at all times
It is a well-known fact that agriculture is the mainstay of the people of India where there is large scale dependency on cultivation / crop growth and sustenance of consumerism. Farmers who form the backbone of the vital profession must get protected by the government economically mainly through the offer of MSP for the entire quantity of produce turned out by the relentless efforts of the former.
But, unfortunately farmers whose support in raising several lakh metric tonnes of paddy during the two crop seasons of Kharif and Rabi annually is of immense help are given a raw deal by government's policy in not providing a favourable and farmer-friendly MSP rate for the agri produce made over by the former.
This kind of situation is exemplified by the recent incident wherein Telangana State had to face the difficulty of non-procurement of surplus paddy produce by the Centre during the rabi season which has resulted in the State resolving suo motu to purchase the entire quantity of the farm produce at an acceptable cost , thereby indicating that the Centre has been adopting an anti-farmer policy much to the detriment of the farmers as well as the State government putting them virtually in an uncomfortable position.
The TRS government under the leadership of KCR deserves kudos for implementing farmer-friendly scheme of "Rythu Bandhu" in the State by providing free and uninterrupted power supply to water the paddy fields besides improvising irrigation projects at a cost not dependent on the Centre.
Also, devastation of crops due to untimely and excess rains besides the drought conditions is also responsible for insolvency experienced by the farm community during the crop seasons. Despite farming and cultivation being the cardinal issues in the country's growth , the concerned community of farmers are not given due recognition and status in our society by economically and politically relegating them to an insignificant degree / position.
Hence, in our democracy which is basically reliant on the field of agriculture, due prominence must be given to make better the condition of farmers and raise their status-quo by encouraging them in all respects as well as call the shots for their social upliftment and stop politicising farmer suicides tooth and nail.
It is high time that the States in the country take a cue from the Rythu Bandhu scheme adopted by the TRS government to gain benefits enjoyed by the farmers in order to ameliorate their condition. Hence, in the fitness of things, free and uninterrupted power supply must be ensured to the farmers in villages of all well-to-do States synonymous with Telangana State.
Bh Indu Sekhar, Hyderabad