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Witness: Ringfence reforms to defend them from freebie culture

by Good News
Witness: Ringfence reforms to defend them from freebie culture

Synopsis

Giving a free pass to such freebie politics is now no longer merely intellectual dishonesty however can be myopic for invariably in the wake of irresponsible schemes emanating from the politics of “free revdi” are eternal costs to the ambiance.iStockPrime Minister Narendra Modi’s remarks in a recent speech at an match in Bundelkhand echoed across the border. Talking on the political culture of meting out freebies, Modi’s reference to “free revdi” looks to have rubbed his political opponents the wicked formulation whereas striking the culture of entitlement underlying freebie politics to mainstream debate.

India has now no longer had an comely debate on this culture of entitlement and its many political manifestations in government schemes and policies. A sterling example of this lack of honesty is Delhi. For virtually two years now, Delhi, governed by Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Admi Event, has been the beneficiary of free electricity for payments below a obvious threshold. Delhi is now no longer fully home to the political and bureaucratic elite however also a wide spectrum of media activists, non-governmental organisations and is the hub of activism of all kinds, including of the inexperienced hue. It’s placing that without reference to being the nerve center of such activism, there has now no longer even been a murmur in Delhi in opposition to this scheme of free electricity whereas the residents are lectured with no destroy in sight on air pollution and climate alternate near November-December every year.

It’s that this lack of honesty that has encouraged irresponsible politics of free electricity to be exported to other states. Minute wonder thus that Kejriwal, in the center of a recent seek the advice of with to Gujarat, promised to raise his policy of free electricity to the pronounce old to pronounce assembly elections due later this year.

One wonders if Kejriwal became as soon as ignorant of the historical past of subsidised electricity in Gujarat and subsequent reforms or if he became as soon as looking to flip the vitality reforms clock aid in Gujarat?

Gujarat, old to the introduction of Modi as chief minister in 2001, became as soon as the sufferer of the worst form of freebie politics over electricity provide. Wrong policies of 1980s that noticed rampant misuse of subsidised electricity in the pronounce contributed immensely to environmental injure, depleting ground water whereas doing limited to be obvious trusty vitality provide. Worse became as soon as the fiscal injure from unpaid electricity dues.

It became as soon as on the aid of this sordid position that Modi launched conception to be one of the critical mettlesome and innovative reforms in the vitality sector by strategy of Jyotigram scheme. The success story of Jyotigram is effectively documented in the fair fair currently launched book [email protected] – Dreams meet Shipping.

Writing on Jyotigram, notorious economist Ashok Gulati explains how the vitality sector reforms contributed to improved groundwater table, trusty vitality provide and sustainable funds of the vitality sector.

It became as soon as thus galling to explore this strive and flip the clock aid on vitality sector reforms in Gujarat with this irresponsible promise of free electricity.

It’s outlandish that the most vocal of environmental activists drop fully silent on irresponsible politics of subsidies and freebies which may per chance perchance per chance effectively be at threat of trigger injure both to the ambiance and to funds.

Elevating the position of vitality reforms, the Top Minister fair fair currently highlighted the enormous pendency of dues to central vitality expertise corporations and to the vitality distribution corporations from varied pronounce governments. Minute wonder that the states equivalent to Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Telangana, amongst others, with absolute top pendency have seen unsustainable subsidy politics. Punjab and Rajasthan also had the absolute top steadiness subsidy receivable by discoms, working into tens of thousands of crores of rupees.

The politics of “free revdi” can be indolent politics for it takes the political shortcut of entitlement seeking in plan of doing the labor of gathering political capital to pursue complicated-to-put in force reforms.

Giving a free pass to such freebie politics is now no longer merely intellectual dishonesty however can be myopic for invariably in the wake of irresponsible schemes emanating from the politics of “free revdi” are eternal costs to the ambiance.

One hopes that Gujarat roundly rejects any strive and flip the clock aid on reforms by seeking to import unsuitable and irresponsible schemes which may per chance perchance per chance effectively be also contributing adversely to climate alternate.


The contributor is Extinct CEO, Prasar Bharati

(Disclaimer: The opinions expressed on this column are that of the author. The info and opinions expressed here attain now no longer replicate the views of www.economictimes.com.)

Monday, 01 August, 2022

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