The UPA has become the primary engine of inflation and unemployment because of its regressive policies. Bank interest rates have doubled while the RBI is seeking to choke off the quantum credit to any sector which beneficially impacts public welfare. By the end of this month, following the pro-EU, pro-China cue of ?Madam?, RBI Governor Yaga Reddy is expected to further deprive hundreds of thousands more of the needy of bank credit, by choking liquidity and raising interest rates. This will ensure that economic growth in the corporate sector slows and Indian industry becomes globally uncompetitive.
Rather than damp the fever of inflation, almost every week, Sonia Maino Gandhi cries out her crocodile tears about inflation, thus feeding the expectation that prices will go up still more and thereby promoting hoarding and speculation in essentials, metals and other key items. While the CPI and the CPM keep the UPA alive in Parliament, they ignore the fact that zero big-time hoarders of essential commodities are in prison. In fact, several of the worst offenders are to be seen regularly in the numerous durbars of UPA leaders, their faces wreathed in smiles even as their numerous international bank accounts swell with each turning of the screw on the newly-colonised Indian consumer. The shameless way in which known certain business entities, aided by their UPA accomplices, are pushing up prices by speculative hoarding is well-known to the agencies of government, yet no action is taken.
How can an honest official act, when such greed-obsessed individuals have access to the only individual with any real power in the Central Government, Sonia Maino Gandhi? The opposition parties need to insist that large-scale hoarding and speculation be put down with an iron hand, because such cruel greed is devastating the lives of Indian citizens. Catching a small shopkeeper is meaningless. It is the huge business entities guilty of stockpiling wheat, rice, pulses and other essentials that deserve punishment, treatment that the UPA refuses to mete out, even while proclaiming a false commitment to the welfare of the poor.
In line with the UPA'spro-EU, pro-China economic policies, SEBI has in effect been supine in the face of speculation by huge international financial conglomerates, even while it imposes irksome and operationally stultifying restrictions in order to damp the ?Feel Good? factor in Indian markets. Sonia can be proud of SEBI, for the agency has converted a success story into a basket case. No longer is there the chance of India competing with other global markets for funds. Instead, the country is set to witness a withdrawal of money from its shores, to the benefit of financial centres elsewhere. Should an investigation take place into the ?kin and friend? nexus between major international financial and other entities and key elements in the UPA, the results would shock the people.
What needs to be done is to use even instruments such as the Goonda Act to deal with those who, for example, divert grain meant for the Public Distribution System or adulterate the same. Just twenty arrests of such depredators ?provided they are substantial and not insignificant?would act as a deterrent, as would severe measures against those presently hoarding essential commodities. No country can allow its lifeblood to be in the control of speculators, unless it be a colony, the way India is becoming under the Maino-controlled UPA.
The four core drivers of employment in India are textiles, automobiles, information technology and agriculture, and these are the very sectors that are either gasping for survival (textiles) or being choked out of growth (IT), thanks to policies pursued under the eye of 10 Janpath. In the past four months alone, more than a hundred thousand textiles-related jobs have been lost in just Tiruppur and Tiruchengode, with more vanishing every day. As for the automobile industry, which has the highest multiplier effect of any, high interest rates and the choking of bank finance are killing it, in a period when it ought to leapfrog into a challenger to Europe and China, the two beneficiaries of Sonia Maino Gandhi'spolicies. Although the UPA'sapologists are saying that the cause for the downturn is ?international? the reality is that bad news elsewhere can translate into good news for India. The need to drive down costs will send companies to India, and will generate demand for Indian brainpower, but for the fact that a deliberate policy of choking domestic consumption and growth is being followed.
Because legitimate domestic channels for the utilisation of money are being systematically blocked by the actions of the Finance Ministry, the huge volume of outlays on the mammoth import bill and other schemes of the UPA is getting diverted towards hawala and speculation, this further causing the stagflation that is consuming the economy. Rather than ensure that facilities and infrastructure available in urban areas spread to the villages, the UPA is driving down the standard of life in urban areas to the same standards found within the poorer levels of the rural community. The middle class and the poor are suffocating, while Sonia Maino Gandhi flits from event to event, all broadcast live on Doordarshan. In the interests of accuracy, the name of the ?national? channel needs to be changed into ?Maino Darshan?, for its current concentration of coverage on that happy family.
In order to sound the alarm, what needs to be done are not walkouts but votes. The NDA needs to force voting on measures suggested by it to reverse the economic collapse that the UPA is crafting for India. During the rest of the Budget Session of Parliament, the NDA needs to put forward for voting a set of taxation and other proposals designed to help rather than hurt the people of India, including Indian farmers, military personnel, those in service and companies. The ruling coalition has betrayed its voters by pursuing policies designed to favour the EU and China over India. The opposition needs to battle back, by calling for ruthless measures against those that are profiting from starvation the very way some depredators did during the 1943-44 Bengal famine. They need to press for cheaper and more abundant credit to Indian corporates and consumers, so that this country can take its place besides other great powers as a land of plenty. They need to demand that the agencies of the state treat citizens with respect rather than with contempt and condescension. Unless the NDA meets the challenge this coming session, it may not be forgiven.