Elections 2019: Focus on issues affecting people: Resource Management
M G Warrier
January 5, 2019
This refers to T N Ninan’s editorial piece “Lutyens Delhi” (Business Standard, Weekend Ruminations, January 5). My thoughts go on a tangent and may not qualify for being printed in this paper. On August 15, 2014, speaking from the ramparts of Red Fort, Prime Minister Modi announced that the Planning Commission had become a house in disrepair and needed dismantling and reconstruction.
We read more into that first Independence Day Message from Modi as PM than cosmetic changes like renaming the institution as NITI Ayog or changes in the then existing system of Five Year Plans. We thought, it was about a wholesale change in approach to planning and management of the country’s resources. Nothing perceptible happened. Subalterns remained subservient to the temporary tenants who faked ownership of the Bastille.
Moving out from symbols and signals, let us face the reality. The five year Modi regime has not changed the way the rich has been managing governance or the attitude of bureaucracy to common man’s problems. Judiciary’s priorities have not changed, nor have the arrogance of money power come down. Then, what has changed?
Prime Minister Modi has taken forward the efforts of Aam Aadmi Party (the political edition of the movement called India Against Corruption) to create awareness among the people about issues that affect them. In the coming years, elections will be fought with focus on issues like distributive justice, reducing corruption, professional capabilities of candidates fighting elections, quality debates in legislatures, mapping and optimum use of domestic resources and protection of human rights and environment.
The domestic resources mentioned above include land and buildings presently remaining idle in capital cities, gold and jewellery in vaults irrespective of ownership, unutilized built areas (commercial and residential) and agricultural lands remaining uncultivated or under-cultivated (list illustrative)
M G Warrier, Mumbai