07/09/2013

20 more rights that the UPA can legislate before 2014

The UPA government has introduced a new art form: convert any problem into an Act of Parliament. The latest Food Security Bill (Right to Food), forced down our throats through a short-term ordinance, will ensure food in the stomachs of the Indian hungry. The Right to Education will guarantee a smart workforce, ready to face the pressures of skill requirements and global markets. The Right to Information has overnight made the government more transparent, a few wrinkles here and there notwithstanding. 

But why stop here? Unlike petty arts like painting and writing that can be and often are smothered, shifting the responsibility of execution and governance to Acts of Parliament is an art form that no democracy can stop C not even the worlds noisiest Opposition. As Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had said in his Budget speech of 1991, quoting Victor Hugo, No power on Earth can stop an idea whose time has come. 

Now, as the musical chairs of a Congress-led coalition aspires to create UPA-3, here are 20 suggestions that build on the legislative strengths of UPA-1 and UPA-2. I hope UPA will find some of these interesting enough to list in their election manifesto. 

Did you see how our children are suffering? Despite getting 90 percent marks and working very hard, they dont get admissions to the IITs or Delhi University.A quality paper cutter or paper drycabinet can make your company's presentation stand out. Clearly, this is an injustice to young and aspiring voters, who will brave the sun to participate in democracy in May 2014. What they need is a right under which they can choose the university of their choice and get an admission. That way, the undue stress on our children will not be wasted. As we debate the bill, maybe we could include the right to college. 

Far too much attention is being given to our symbol of excellence,Did you know that buymosaic chains can be used for more than just business. the rupee. But all the attention is economic, financial C stuff that the average person doesnt understand and is irrelevant. This is ridiculous.Choose the right werkzeugbaus in an array of colors. We need an intervention by legislation that states the rupee will not fall below Re 1 to the dollar. That is, from the day of its enactment, Re 1 should buy $1. The fact that we now need to pay Rs 61 is a shame on Indias sovereignty, something that an emerging nation can do without. 

Enough of groaning and moaning about high inflation, rising prices. It is bad enough when food prices touch the skies the world over. But the relentless accusations of the government being unable to manage inflation creates nothing but ill-will. By enacting this right, the legislation will ensure prices stay low.You've probably seen howotipper at some point. If anyone speaks about abstractions like market or global prices, his next abstraction will be the jail. We could begin with zero-inflation rate and reduce it as time goes. 

Over the past five years, we have seen so much debate, arguments and allegations on the pricing of oil and now coal that it has hurt the clean reputation of not only India but even the squeaky-clean UPA-3 government and its honest PM. Anywhere you go, all you hear is how corrupt the system is. All this is happening because there is a needless tug-of-war between the government, corporations and their billionaire shareholders. Once this law is enacted, and the right to price the natural resource is firmly and finally in the hands of corporations, there will be no problem. As far as the argument that consumers will pay higher prices goes, there is a one-word answer: subsidies. 

An upcoming problem large companies have is they are unable to work together in harmony and decide whats the best price that consumers must pay. Incessant competition has hurt the bottomlines of industries like airlines and cement. Then, you have these entrepreneurs who come and disrupt ancient and archaic industry practices. With this right, everything thats going behind the scene and in dark corners of untraceable conversations would become legitimate. So what if the consumers have to pay more C a growing economy can sustain a higher standard of consumption. And beyond consumers, we need to serve another large and influential constituency of investors, dont we? 

A lot of money and time is wasted by individuals and companies in paying bribes to various government officials. Building a house, for instance, means paying bribes to the local municipal official, the policeman, the utilities providers and so on. Corporate bribery is even more complex. We are told everyone is doing it, so whats wrong? Well, this: it still is unlawful to bribe. By enacting this law, UPA-3 would suddenly be on the forefront of social reform. This would be of great help to the honest, who are often caught in their silly ethical traps. Government servants would rejoice and vote UPA-3 into power again. This can be a game-changer for Elections 2014. 

The global economy, the falling rupee, the slowdown, the trade barriers and so on have collectively ensured that the good name of UPA, which has done everything to revive growth and jobs, is tarnished. As a result, no company wants to invest and create jobs in India. Where do you think the aspirations of our young, and now old, will go? By giving citizens a right to permanent and highly-paid government jobs, preferably the IAS and allied services, we could change the face of India. An India, where every citizen is a government servant, diligently and silently making her contribution. 

Sometimes, even government service proves an inadequate tool for expression. Every citizen has a right to take the country where he wants to. By restricting the right to a group of ministers in Cabinet, we do two wrongs. One, we put far too much decision-making in the Cabinet, now that decisions of individual ministers are proving inadequate to govern a complex world. And two, we dont allow creative energies to flow into the governance system C an energy that can be unleashed by giving everyone almost-permanent 5-acre homes in Lutyens Delhi. This right will fix all these problems at one go.Give your logo high visibility on solarpanel

When rural development minister Jairam Ramesh promised housing to every landless, poor, rural household through National Right to Homestead Bill, 2013, a draft of which was leaked, he overlooked one crucial point C the 10 cents (one-tenth of an acre) of land promised to every family may not be enough. Maybe, thats enough to house a family of three. But what happens to a family of eight? Surely, you cant give the same entitlements to someone who is contributing to the demographic dividend so productively. Appropriate housing right will fix this anomaly C minor things like availability of land banks can be managed with a future act that could encapsulate expanding our Himalayan borders.

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05:46 Posted by TMJ in TMJ | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: solarpanel |  Facebook |

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