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Friday, Oct 22, 2021
Outlook.com

The Real Ism, Populism

Alas, administrative reform, delivery of benefits get the go-by again

The Real Ism, Populism
Illustration by Sorit
The Real Ism, Populism
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

This is an election-eve budget without an election. It has copied schemes that the government thinks helped win seats in the recent general elections. It ignores the urgent issues of administrative reform and decentralisation of power to improve accountability, delivery and fiscal responsibility. In 2008-09, the three economic stimulus packages cost Rs 1,86,000 crore, or 3.5 per cent of the gdp. The 2009-10 budget seeks to provide stimulus through a substantial increase in spending for the aam aadmi via schemes like nregs despite ample evidence that present spending on these schemes is inefficient in reaching beneficiaries. "Leakages" are more than what reaches the beneficiaries. Increased spending on such schemes should have waited for the strengthening of the institutional framework, especially at the village level.

It's known that venal members of the administration rip off every social scheme. There are many reports on administrative reforms, but even this prime minister, a bureaucrat for many years, has not...

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