Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Proposed speech at Hindu College, Delhi on 19.1.2017 at 2 p.m. ---Part 2
In the first part of my proposed speech at Hindu College which was posted on fb earlier I had stated at the end that The Indian Constitution, 1950 has exhausted itself, the state institutions in India have largely become hollow and empty shells, while the people's distress and discontent is rising steadily, and there will be a revolution in India, though that may take several years.
After this revolution a new Constitution will have to be framed, which guarantees the Indian people the economic rights mentioned in the speech of American President Franklin Roosevelt ' The Second Bill of Rights ' ( see online and in Youtube ), i.e. employment with good incomes, healthcare, nutritious food, good education. housing, etc.to all.
But providing these rights on paper alone will be meaningless. They have to be provided in reality. How can that be done ? We have to provide employment, free healthcare, free education, free housing, etc to over 1.25 billion people. Where will the money for all this come from ? Money does not fall from the sky. Even setting up one primary school costs a lot of money, for land, building, etc and recurring salaries to teachers and other staff. For higher educational institutions we also need libraries, laboratories with scientific apparatus and equipment, etc. And we have set up tens of thousands of such schools, colleges, engineering and medical colleges, hospitals, scientific institutes, etc.
This will require a huge amount of money, and this money can only be generated by a highly developed industry. In other words, we have to industrialize on a massive scale.
Now industrialization on a large scale is no problem. India today has a huge pool of competent engineers, managers, technicians and scientists. We have also huge natural resources ( India is not a small country like England or Japan, but is amost a continent. )
The problem, however, is this : how will the goods produced be sold ? Our people are mostly poor and have very little purchasing power.
Therefore the real problem is not how to increase production ( that can easily be done with our huge technical talent and natural resources ) but how to increase the purchasing power of our masses ?
In socialist countries the method of raising the purchasing power of the masses, and thereby rapidly expanding the economy and consequently abolishing unemployment, was broadly this :
1. Prices of commodities were fixed by the government.
2. These prices were reduced by 5-10% every 2 years or so
3. This resulted in steadily increasing the purchasing power of the masses, because with the same income people could buy more goods. In other words, the real income of the masses went up, even if nominally it remained the same ( since real wage is relative to the price index ).
4. Simultaneously, production was stepped up, and this increased production could be sold in the domestic market, as the purchasing power of people was steadily rising.
5. This led to rapid expansion of the economy, leading to creation of millions of jobs and thereby abolition of unemployment.
During the Great Depression which hit the Western economies in 1929 after the Wall Street Crash ( it continued till the breakout of the Second World War in 1939 ) when about one third or more people in Western countries were unemployed and factories were shutting down, the Soviet economy was rapidly expanding and unemployed abolished by following the above methodology.
Of course this was only possible in a socialist economy, where the problem was solved by state action.
I am not saying that we must necessarily follow the method adopted by socialist countries. We can adopt any other method if thereby we can raise the purchasing power of the Indian masses and thereby rapidly expand the Indian economy, which is the only way of abolishing unemployment in India and generate the wealth we need for the welfare of our people
The central point, and therefore the main problem before India, is how to raise the purchasing power of the masses ? Unless we solve that problem, our new Constitution guaranteeing economic rights to the Indian people will be illusory

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