opinion | Why did PM Modi warn about ‘shortcut’ freebie politics?

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday made a politically significant remark about what he described as “shortcut politics”. Addressing a BJP rally in Jharkhand’s Deoghar, after launching projects worth Rs 16,800 crore, Modi said, “People should stay away from the ideology of shortcut politics, as it can lead to a short circuit and ruin the country.” Maybe.”

The Prime Minister’s remarks have to be seen from the chaos prevailing in Sri Lanka and what many state governments are giving away for free. Modi said, “I want to caution everyone about the challenge of shortcut politics that we are facing. It is very easy to make populist promises and garner votes by shortcut methods. Such leaders do not have to work hard at all and do not work hard at all. It is they have to think about the far-reaching consequences of populism. But it is true that a country which adopts shortcut politics has to face short circuit one day or the other. Shortcut politics can ruin the country.

Modi said, ‘In India, we should stay away from such shortcut politics. If we have to take India to great heights in its 100th year of independence, we must work hard to achieve it. There is no shortcut to hard work. After independence, which was dominated by political parties, they adopted many shortcuts. As a result, the countries which achieved independence with India have progressed a lot and we could not progress much further. Today we should save our country from such old mistakes.”

The Prime Minister said, “Let me give an example about electricity, which is also very essential in our villages. If we do not have electricity, we cannot recharge our cell phones, nor can we watch television, Nor can we start pumps to provide water to every household. If we don’t have electricity, we may have to go back to the era of using kerosene. Without electricity, factories would shut down and workers would The job will be lost.But we cannot generate electricity by shortcut.

“We had to invest thousands of crores of rupees to set up a power plant in Jharkhand. Such investments provide new jobs and new opportunities. Political parties, which take shortcuts, waste that money to get votes. Such methods can harm the progress of the country.”

“From the bottom of my heart, I would appeal to my countrymen to stay away from shortcut politics. The leaders who indulge in shortcut politics will not build new airports or modern highways or new AIIMS hospitals or medical colleges in every district for you. I have launched many highways in Jharkhand. It is very easy to tell people that people will not have to pay for bus tickets or auto fares. It may sound populist, but such shortcuts can ruin a state’s economy. If the government does not get the money, then where will the funds come from to build new roads and highways.

Why did the Prime Minister say so? What free electricity was he talking about? Which political parties in India was the Prime Minister talking about? Was he indirectly pointing to the economic collapse of Sri Lanka? We have seen how the people of Sri Lanka are longing for food, fuel and essential commodities.

Modi is right when he says freebies are not good for a healthy economy, they are not good for citizens paying taxes, and for the government that has to implement welfare schemes for the poor.

In Delhi, the Aam Aadmi Party government is providing free electricity up to 200 units and free water up to 20,000 liters per month, and in Punjab, the AAP government has announced that it will provide up to 300 units of free electricity from July 1.

The Punjab government has a huge debt of Rs 3 lakh crore. It has no money to pay interest on loans taken, but to garner votes, AAP leaders promised free electricity and won elections to form their government. Free electricity will put a new burden of Rs 5,000 crore on the state exchequer. Power generation companies will charge full duty from the government.

In April, NITI Aayog member Ramesh Chandra said, if free electricity and electricity, and farmers’ loan waiver schemes continue, India could face a similar crisis that Sri Lanka is facing now. The Prime Minister was pointing towards this challenge in his Jharkhand rally. Freebies can make a country bankrupt, as happened in Sri Lanka. Although Modi did not name Sri Lanka, his warnings have to be seen in the light of what is happening in that neighboring country.

Sri Lanka has a population of 22.5 million, roughly the same as Delhi, but Sri Lankans are now facing severe shortages of food and fuel. They do not have cooking gas and petrol, and the prices of rice, wheat and all essential commodities are skyrocketing. The cost of 1 kg of milk powder from Sri Lanka is Rs 2,900. A liter of palm oil or mustard oil sells for Rs 3,000. Tomato is selling 800 to 1000 rupees per kg. Wheat is being sold for Rs 400 to 500 a kg, while rice is being sold at Rs 600 a kg.

India TV correspondent T. Raghavan, who is currently in Colombo and reporting live from Ground Zero, says an LPG cylinder is available for Rs 5,000. You have to wait 12 days to get the cylinder. There is rationing of petrol up to three liters per person and that too after standing in queue for ten days.

These facts are indeed worrying, and Sri Lanka is rapidly entering a period of nationwide chaos. President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has fled to the Maldives, with thousands of protesters occupying the prime minister’s office and state television headquarters. Common people are blaming the Rajapaksa family for ruining the country.

In the Rajapaksa dynasty, Gotabaya was the president, Mahinda was the prime minister, Mahinda’s brother Chamal Pajapaksa was the irrigation minister, his brother Tulsi Rajapaksa was the finance minister, and Mahinda’s son Namal Rajapaksa was the sports minister. The island nation was ruled by the Rajapaksa family.

Rajapaksa lowered taxes, implemented populist schemes, the treasury was empty and new notes were printed, and billions of dollars in loans were taken from abroad, mainly from China. The government is now bankrupt. Most of the leaders have either fled the country or are underground.

We, in India, should learn from what happened in Sri Lanka. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been warning us from time to time about the politics of dynasty, which has harmed the country. He’s also cautioned us about freebie shortcut politics. When the money in the public exchequer runs out, the welfare schemes stop, and then people come out on the streets, as happened in Sri Lanka. The Rajapaksa family was in control of the government, the armed forces, and the bureaucracy, and to gain votes, the family was distributing freebies and receiving the popular vote in return. Result: Out of 2.25 crore Sri Lankans, about 2.5 million people are starving. They don’t have food to eat.

The rest of the population, mainly from the middle and lower middle classes, is struggling to make ends meet. The cost of a packet of biscuits is Rs 150 and that of a liter of milk is Rs 500. Children are unable to buy biscuits and milk. Dynasticism and shortcut politics is a curse for the economy of a country. Sri Lanka is rapidly moving towards anarchy. Let us learn from the Sri Lankan crisis.

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