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Manav Bajaj

Manav Bajaj, CEO, Consumer Sath

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How Would the Budget Look Like if I were the Finance Minister?

Poverty is still a major setback for Indian Economy and a myriad of people are deprived of basic needs.

Perfection is absolutely a relative concept with infinite scope for amendments and improvements, but human optimism is so brave that it never stops making efforts. So, instead of making any comment on past endeavours, I would like to suggest some constructive ideas that would help to prepare a budget more close to perfection, if not perfect. To gain the maximum from the public investment, Education, Judiciary, and Public Enterprises will be the top investment areas in my dream budget. Here is the need and significance of each, one by one. 

If education is the real power, then, why do countries invest less in education and spend more on defence?

Tough almost 75 percent of Indian population is literate today, but education is beyond literacy. Education must enable people to understand their rights & duties and should empower them to take actions for the betterment of the self and the society. On the other hand, when people deprive of education, they also deprive of their rights. So, to harvest quality education from primary level to Centre and state’s universities, the government must invest at least 8-2 percent of the total budget amount in the education sector, because it is the education that ensures both technological and financial independence for a country alleviates internal economic disparity. Moreover, education brings fairness and transparency in the marketplaces and saves consumers from the fraudulent practices of businesses. 

Strong judiciary is the soul of the strong democracy

Abraham Lincoln’s definition of democracy “Government of the people, by the people, and for the people” is valid only if the judiciary of a country performs impartially as well as speedily. A fast and strong judicial system requires adequate infrastructure and the right number of resource personnel which is indeed a costly affair, but unignorable. People can’t utilize their merits in nation building until and unless the judiciary addresses their problems and grievances, appropriately and speedily. So, if I were the finance minister, advancement of the judicial system would be the second most priority in the fiscal budget of the country.         

A disinvestment is a pessimistic approach 

Poverty is still a major setback for Indian Economy and a myriad of people are deprived of basic needs. The presence of public organizations counterbalances the greed of the private sectors and stabilizes the market prices. Unfortunately, the trend of disinvestment is picking up the pace for almost past two decades due to the poor performance of the public sector companies. Now, the question arises, if Navratna can compete with private firms and make profits, why not the other government-run companies. In fact, the poor performance of these companies is not due to lack of competitiveness or inefficiency, it is the lack of attention by public authorities is primarily responsible for their debacle and fiasco. If they are funded and managed properly, they can also revive and contribute to economic growth. Hence, to judiciously utilize state resources, there is an urgent need to re-think about disinvestment, which is an out-and-out pessimistic approach.  

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house

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Budget 2018

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