Ideas for India from IDEAz – Implementable and Actionable ways to Prosperity
Struggle not futilely attempting to unravel the many knots of the ropes of ill-thought-out Laws and, Bureaucratic red-tape that bind the energy and zeal of our countrymen. Focus on your objective and just – Cut the Ropes!
To do the same things the same way or with only incremental changes will get you only similar outcomes with marginal changes. To really make a change you need to think out of the box and work on new and effective ideas. THINK BIG! THINK NEW! Execute with confidence recognizing that Abundance is realizable with Technology, Innovation andEntrepreneurship.!
“India… in the context of its history and cultural heritage is a developed country, a (‘Sone Ki Chidia’), in a state of decay”. – Shashi Tharoor.
We need to work together to once again get India back to its original greatness and position in the world. To do this effectively we need to understand wealth and the dignity of labour, and develop an action plan for improvement in each sector of our economy and for all sections of our society. IDEAz proposes implementable and actionable ways to do so. Also to be happy we need to understand personal issues and how to resolve them and IDEAz4INDIA ver 2.0 covers much of these subjects.
1. Wealth – understanding it.
In 1985 the world wealth was about US$12 Trillion against world asset / resources value (all resources) of also about US$12 Trillion.
By 2000 the world’s asset value remained at around US$12 Trillion allowing for new discoveries replacing used resources, while the total wealth grew to US$200 Trillion, an over 16 times multiple.
This growth came from the digital and ideas / knowledge world and was mainly reflected in the Equity markets. Those not in the equity markets did not get to share in this growth of wealth, as it is obvious that if you are not in the queue, you don’t get the benefits.
To ensure that all Indians do get into the equity markets and hence share in the growth of wealth, we need to encourage the equity culture. Of course not everyone can deal with the equity market by themselves. Hence the need for the Government to set up, or encourage the setting up of appropriate Financial Institutions (FI’s) in each important sector and ensure their proper regulation and encourage everyone to enter the equity market through such FI’s. Even then some sections of the Society will not be able to even reach the first rung of the ladder to join such FI’s and will therefore require an assist, a onetime head start to do so.
2. Dignity of Protest and calling for support:
In the old days, the Kings / Rajas in India were seen, and also saw themselves, as upholders of Dharma and as caretakers of their populace. Fortunately the enforcement of the concept of Dharma in the functioning of the Society in ancient India ensured that most of them did value the welfare of their subjects. The invaders brought in a change as they ruled as they had done in their own regions, as despots who saw their subjects more as serfs, dependent on their benevolence, if any.
The British were no different. In fact their avowed aim was to break-up the established Indian Society, drive it into poverty and then show themselves as the benefactors helping the poor and so remake it to suit them, so as to better control / rule India and brings the illiterate and poorer sections of the people into their fold and, to better enable them to loot the wealth of India. They introduced the word ‘Dalits’ to call people of such sections by and worked at encouraging such people to see them as the real benefactors and granters of largesse and therefore to come to them, not claiming, but begging for support. After all they sought to educate only peons, clerks and interpreters.
3. Justice and Laws:
The British have over the centuries worked to introduce a judicial system that was biased toward control of the populace and revenue generation. To a great extent our politicians and the Governments they ran, mainly Congress, continued with a similar attitude. It is time to now review our Laws, the judicial system and procedures to better reflect the context of our society today. A good, well functioning and effective judicial system is the backbone of a Democracy. (See-‘the Indian Judicial System – Comments on ;’).
In order to bring India back to that level of prosperity as once enjoyed and bring about Harmony and Happiness to all its citizens, the Institute for Democratic & Economic Affairz – (IDEAz), presents practical, actionable and implementable recommendations to resolve each of the many problems the Country and faces and also recommends ways to attain personal contentment and happiness by viewing personal matters from a better perspective on its website www.ideaz4india.in and in its Book, IDEAz4INDIA ver.2.0
4. Other Ideas for INDIA from IDEAZ – many now under implementation
a) RIVER LINKING – for better irrigation and flood control. (See – ‘Grand Irrigation and Power System – GIPS’).
b) Dealing with Neighbours – with an attitude of ‘MANTHAN’, the co-operative Asian way and not that of ‘Tug of War’, the Western and Communist way.
The ancient Indian story of the’ Asuras’ and the ‘Devas’ who decided to work together to Churn (Manthan) the Ocean of opportunities to achieve abundance for ALL of them, was, in most cases, the way the ancient Asians resolved their differences. Generally a ‘Tug of War’ between two reasonably matched forces ,or actual war, would leave even the winner exhausted and the victory only a Pyrrhic one. There is no record, across the past many millennia, of Indians conquering and taking over other Kingdoms. Of course wars were fought for the limited purpose to resolve issues and of establishing vassalage. Generally the old King continued as ruler. Acceptance of culture and knowledge, ‘Soft power’, was what spread the Indian influence over much of Asia, especially South-East Asia. This led to greater trade, exchange of ideas and greater prosperity for all, and it is this attitude of ‘Manthan’ and not that of ‘Tug of War’ that we now also should work with to enable better use of available resources and generate abundance for ALL!
Of course, if any neighbour with a non-Asian mindset refuses to accept ‘Manthan’ as a mutually beneficial way to get the best for both parties and best the way forward, then perhaps a ‘Tug of War’ becomes inevitable. Hopefully better sense can be made to prevail and the Asian way to work together to resolve any issues will be recognized as the best way!
i) DEALING WITH CHINA – As the old saying goes,Good fences(Borders) lead to good neighbourly relationships. Settling Borders and the value of ‘MANTHAN’ type policies. Border Demarcation, after comprehensive, on ground, survey of our Northern border from the Myanmar – China – India border point in the east, to China – Pakistan – India border point in the West. Clearly demarcating our points of interest and the heights we need to occupy to protect them. The boundary line should be in the valley beyond such heights and should thereafter prevent ‘nibbling’ or ‘fait accompli’ actions which cannot be acceptable by either side. Make China understand the benefits of a ‘Manthan’ policy of working together versus the ‘Tug of War’ policy of working against each other. In this world of Technological Progress, this will ensure better utilization of the strengths of each to provide Abundance for all. It would be an Asian way of resolving conflicts and ensuring harmony. (See – ‘CHINA – Dealing with’ at www.ideaz4india.in).
ii) DEALING WITH PAKISTAN IN J & K – Take up all possible water storage and management projects in J & K as allowed under the Indus water treaty of 1960 to avoid Pakistan taking undue advantage of the as is biased Indus Water Treaty. If deemed necessary, be prepared to re-negotiate or, even abrogate, the Indus Water Treaty. If any untoward reaction is made by Pakistan then we can justifiably take over POK. (See – ‘Pakistan and J & K – The Real Issue – and how India can react to Pak based Terrorism at www.ideaz4india.in).
c) RAMA NAHAR / CANAL – Join with Thailand and other Countries in South East Asia to construct a Panama type shipping canal across the Kra isthmus in Thailand, the old trans-shipment trade route from the Andaman sea to the South Vietnam Sea, the peninsular neck in Thailand. This will greatly reduce the costs and risks of traversing the Malacca Straits. Call it the Rama Nahar Project in recognition of the historic and cultural recognition of RAMA in Thailand and its ancient links with India. (See – ‘Rama Nahar – Thailand Canal – An Asian Cooperative Venture)’.
d) CONNECTING THE NORTH – EAST – The North East part of our country is only connected to the rest of the Country via a 22 mile narrow corridor which is a security vulnerability we need to address. We need to develop a more effective and safer connection by developing a corridor to the sea – Negotiating with Myanmar and Bangladesh to allow 50 Km or wider corridor from Mizoram to the Bay of Bengal, and undertaking the construction of Highways and Rail links to the Ports to be built there. This would open up the N-E of our Country and connect the region to the rest of the Country via Sea-routes. The corridor has been obtained and work on the development of necessary infrastructure is being undertaken. We should also negotiate with Bangladesh for an additional corridor, on ground or elevated, to better connect W.Bengal to the N.E.
We should also negotiate with Myanmar for the return of the Coco islands earlier transferred to them by Prime Minister Nehru without Parliamentary sanction and since leased by Myanmar to China leading to a security risk to India.
e) CURRENCY EXCHANGE VALUES (See -“Money and Financial Boom & Bust Cycles” and “Interse Valuation of Currency”). – A realistic method for valuation of inter currency exchanges should be based not only on comparative import / export requirements and tourist / other commercial or so called Purchase Power Parity, but also on factors such as,
Minimum wage rates for semi-skilled and unskilled labour in Rural, Semi Urban and Urban areas.
Costs for Power / Energy per Kwh (unit).
Cost for water for domestic / industrial / agricultural per kilo litre.
Cost for Water / Rail / Road / Air Cargo transportation per ton per 100 kms.
If our currency is backed up with tangible and monetizable assets and the cost of any of our produce or products are arrived at in a measured manner, the value of our currency will be well received by our trading partners.
f) GOLD HOLDINGS-MONETIZATION OF: India holds over 100 to 120 thousand tons of Gold or more in jewelry etc. held by its citizens, mainly women as ‘StreeDhan’ and by its Banks (against Gold Loans). Like stagnant water in a pond, most of such wealth will not generate any benefits. We should monetize at least 50 percent of such gold holdings and release equivalent currency into circulation in a steady manner, so as not to spur inflation, but to encourage investment in Infrastructure. This can be done against the issue of equivalent value of ‘Bearer’ gold bonds by the RBI and held by it, only to be issued at the time of actually asking for deposit of the gold.
In case of any serious emergency when we may need to actually produce the gold, we can go to our citizens, especially the women folk, to donate, or loan the gold to the Government against the gold bonds. They would recognize that the value of their gold would only be fully realized when their Country is stable and strong and they will hence have no hesitation in participating in keeping the country so. This was proved in the response to calls by Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose and by Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri in 1943-45 and 1965 respectively.
The RBI initially rejected this idea, saying that no Country in the world does this. But when it was pointed out to it that no other Country in the world held Gold like this, the RBI too soon changed its mind and is now proceedings with monetizing some of such gold.
Also import of Gold should be allowed freely at say one percent tax, and domestic sale of Jewellery also be at one percent or at most five percent, however export of gold should not be allowed except as value added products (Jewellery etc) which should be taxed at five percent or even at 10/12 percent as deemed fit. This will lead to more gold holdings within our Country and will eliminate smuggling. (See-‘Equity in Taxation & comments on I.T. & G.S.T.’)
g) BANKING EXPANSION:
When the RBI was seeking to expand the reach of our Country’s banking system and invited applicants to prove their capability of reach and their ‘Know your Customer- KYC’ ability. IDEAZ recommended the consideration of converting the Posts & Telegraphs Department into a Post Bank as it would be the best suited, with its unmatched reach to even the doorstep of its remotest customers, its proven ability to handle money transfers and savings and its unbeatable knowledge of their customers,. The RBI initially hesitated but within a week or so, saw merit in the recommendation and took it up on itself to set up the Post Bank. Today even Banks like Women’s’ Grameen Bank are perhaps being considered for integration into the Post Bank.
h) REORGANIZING THE MILITARY – into Offensive and Defensive elements for greater effectiveness, and a better personnel policy, with lateral entry of officers, unable to be promoted due to the pyramidal structure of the Forces, into appropriate Civil Services, Police and other security services etc and increased period of Service in the defensive elements. This will also help make full use of the experience of the personnel of the Armed Forces and, greatly reduce the pension bill. (See – “War, Conflicts, Security and the Military at www.ideaz4india.in).
i) BUREAUCRACY – To ensure the right sort of Bureaucrats we need to recruit only from those who have served in the military or National Service organizations for a few years, say five years, and learnt discipline, how to serve and to take orders before giving them with only one UPSC exam as a criterion. Once selected, they should undergo evaluation of performance every five years. Pension to be applicable only on completion of Thirty years of service and only a lump sum payment of gratuity based on years of service or a Voluntary Retirement (VRS) Package for those leaving or being released earlier. Five year contract employment of Technocrats and other Professionals from outside the Service can also be considered for lateral entry at Director / Joint Secretary Levels and even as Advisors. (See – Bureaucrats – Selection & Development.)
Note: For more on each of the above, see the articles on the same subject at www.ideaz4india.in
– Jai Bharat! Jai Hind! –