Anti-people Policies of the Modi Govt. hold Long Term Negative Implications

  • Dr. Satyendra Kumar

10 years of Dr. Man Mohan Singh led UPA government brought 27 Crore people, out of poverty. This could become possible only through a series of poverty alleviation policies adopted by the UPA government. There was 6.7 percent growth rate during 10 years of UPA regime between 2004-2014. 11. On the other hand, Narendra Modi government pushed 23 Crore people below poverty line in the last 8 years. The Modi government adopted a series of anti-people policies in terrible haste which holds long term negative implications. Sudden demonetisation failed to achieve desired results, however, it caused immense suffering to common masses and it also destroyed informal economy, where millions of people were employed. Demonetization was a big blow to medium and small-scale industries. Incumbent Modi government pursued anti-people policies that aggravated the growing unemployment, agrarian distress and difficulties faced by traders due to faulty GST.

In the name of tax reform, a faulty GST was introduced by clubbing together various state and central taxes. With the introduction of GST, tax slab was enhanced and states started getting delayed payment of their share of tax collected by the centre. Increased taxation proved another burden on tax payers.

But final blow came with sudden brutal Covid lockdown in March, 2020. Millions of migrant workers, employed in various cities, started returning to their native places on foot due to closure of all means of public transportation. The migrants undertook long and tiring journeys with their family members amid intense heat and other problems, and thousands lost their lives. Closure of industrial units, business establishments and informal trade, destroyed income and caused havoc to the workforce. Almost 3 Crore people lost their jobs due to unplanned lockdown in 2020.

In the current financial year, the budgetary allocation for MGNREGA is cut substantially. This will badly affect income of the poor living in rural areas. During Covid lockdown, MGNREGA was the only source of income for many rural households.

Prices of diesel, petrol and cooking gas cylinder are being increased every now and then. In the last few years, prices of petrol and diesel have been increased 60 times. Lakhs of Crores have been collected through excise duty collected on petroleum products. Every time prices of diesel and petrol are increased, cost of transportation of consumer products go high, which ultimately results in price rise.

Last 8 years of Modi government proved worst in terms of employment generation. Lakhs of job vacancies are pending in various central and state government departments but posts are not filled deliberately. Educated youths have invested their valuable time and resources in preparation for the government jobs but vacancies remained. Several profit-making PSUs are sold to the cronies; friendly with the Modi government, at much lower market prices. These PSUs were established by the visionary Prime Minister Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru and his worthy successors; for national development and generating employment for the educated youths.

The author is an Assistant Professor, Department of English in Kirori Mal College, University of Delhi