MANIFESTO FOR ELECTIONS TO TAMILNADU LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY(2)

25/02/2016
  1. AGRICULTURE AND IRRIGATION

The government will procure all the vegetables that could not be sold to the public from producers at a guaranteed price of Rs.10/- per kg for tomato and Rs.15/ per kg for brinjal. Rates will be fixed for other vegetables treating these as base prices. Procurement price for paddy will be fixed at Rs.1800 per quintal. The prices of agricultural produce are very low and unremunerative and there is a need to increase the prices.

The wages of unskilled agricultural and other laborers have gone up from Rs.35 per day to Rs.150 per day in the last few years for women and from Rs.70 per day to Rs.350- Rs.400 per day for men. This is a welcome correction of wage level. The employers have got used to this high wage level. Similarly consumers will get used to higher prices of agricultural produce particularly since our government will provide jobs to all able bodied and willing people by undertaking massive works like digging lakes, canals, wells, laying roads,  power transmission lines, solar power stations, hydro-electric power stations etc.

government would set up a separate Ministry for irrigation. In addition to constructing new dams and canals, this ministry would have the following responsibilities;

i.Linking rivers in the state.

iii.Creating links among lakes and between lakes and rivers.

  1. looking after the Lake management including deepening lakes and continuously desilting them
  2. Creating new lakes to ensure that each village has a lake
    vi. Looking after Water management including draining rain water in pits and other shallow water into the nearby lakes. Water left in pits evaporates and it does not recharge ground water. When lakes have sufficient water, underground water will be recharged.

vii. Keeping the lakes and rivers clean

viii. Cleaning waste water and then using the same for irrigation without letting into the lake. This will ensure that lake water is not contaminated and this water can be used for drinking after purification.

  1. Cleaning river banks and ensuring that no garbage is dumped there
  2. Sanctioning loans for digging irrigation wells including bore wells. If lakes have water, digging wells will not lower the water table. It is wrong to ban new bore wells,
  3. Tamilnadu receives around 100 cm of rainfall per year on an average. If the rainwater is harvested to the maximum extent possible, two- three crops can be raised in most of the places. Tamilnadu will become surplus in food grains under our government.

xiii. While supplying water to people from reservoirs/rivers hundreds of kilometres away is welcome, this is not as reliable a source as local lake water.

xiii. Each district would have a senior water resources development officer with technical staff and with adequate powers to sanction construction of lakes and related work

The per capita production of food grains (rice, wheat, coarse grains and pulses) in India is less than 200kg per year while in the world it is over300 kg. This means that India’s performance in agriculture needs to be improved vastly. In India among the various states, Tamilnadu’s performance is very poor. During 2009-10, India produced 218 million tonnes for a population of around 1180 million. The per capita production is about 185 kg per year. Tamilnadu state produced about 8.0 million tonnes for a population of about 67 million people, which works out to a per capita production of only 120kg per year.

India’s production went up from 176 million tonnes in 1990-91 to 218 million tonnes in 2009-10 which works out to about 24%increase in 20 years. This increase itself is low. But increase in Tamilnadu is very much lower at 8% from 7.4 million tonnes in 1990-91 to only 8.0 million tonnes in 2009-10.

With the policies of our government, agricultural production will increase atleast by 100% in 5 years.

Water is a renewable resource. The ground water automatically gets recharged as it rains and there is no problem in exploiting ground water. There is no question of excessive exploitation as once the water dries underground there can be no exploitation. Moreover, the dangers of flood will be minimized when there are more open and borewells and lakes as the recharge of ground water and lakes will take much of rain water leaving lesser water to flow into the rivers.

Subsidies to farmers will be gradually reduced; if necessary by increasing the prices of their produce.

restrictions on exploitation of ground water will be removed.

To meet the labour shortage in agricultural sector, there will be further mechanization-in sowing, planting, weeding, harvesting, thrashing etc.

Restrictions on farmers and others for removing soil from the lakes for use in fields, brick kilns etc. and the lakes will be removed as this will lead to desilting of lakes free of cost.

While the quantum of rainfall in a year has not changed much, the rainfall has not been timely. In order to ensure timely rainfall, it would be useful to resort to cloud seeding and simultaneously to undertake research on refining the existing technology to achieve lower cost, safety, avoid pollution, avoid lower rains during the period subsequent to cloud seeding. Research by as many universities as are willing would also be funded by the government. Cloud seeding is not new to Tamilnadu, as it had already undertaken several times in the past starting from 1960s in Nilgiris district, though there was a long break after 1960s. Several countries, particularly in Asia like Thailand, China etc are resorting to cloud seeding. Each district would have one organization to undertake this operation. It can be a public or private organization.

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Working days and holidays.

25/07/2015

India is a land of diversity. There are several regions,religions, races, languages, festivals,customs etc. The central and state governments have fixed the number of holidays in a year at less than 20 whereas in every region, there are more than 40 important festivals- religious as well as secular festivals. The government restricting holidays in a year prevents people from observing and celebrating some of the important festivals. It is essential for people not to deviate from traditions. Therefore the governments should declare holidays for all the festivals. As it is also important not to ignore work, the government should cancel holidays on certain saturdays and sundays. There is nothing wrong if offices, factories, business establishments etc. work on a few sundays and a few saturdays. Thus the number of working days in a year would remain unaltered. Of course, it is better, if the number of working days is increased so that the country develops faster with higher production,coming from longer working time.


Food Security-expansion of irrigation

03/09/2014

Total world production of cereals increased from 2353 million MT in 2007 to 2566 million MT in 2012 i.e by 9.1% in 5 years while the population during this period went up by around 6% only. Thus the per capita availability has gone up. What is more important is that in the food deficit Africa the growth rates of food prouction are higher than the world average growth rates.In Africa the increase in cereal production is 25.2% and in roots and tubers 26.4%. Similarly there is considerable increase of around 15% in production of vegetables, fruits, eggs, meat and milk. To sustain this increase, expansion of irrigation is important. Construction of dams, lakes, digging of canals, diversion of rivers should be given priority. Simultaneously micro irrigation like drip and sprinkler irrigation should also be undertaken.

The current per capita production of cereals at 350 kg per year is more than sufficient. The surplus will become more pronounced if feeding animals with cereals is reduced and fodder production is increased.

Enough food grains are produced. Giving buying power to the people will ensure food security.


INTERNAL DEBT and ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

20/03/2014

EXTRACTS FROM MANUSCRIPT, “WHAT AILS INDIAN ECONOMY”

While India has incurred more foreign debt than is required, it has contracted less domestic debt than is required to meet the legitimate development needs. According to the Reference Manual, “India 1998”, the total domestic debt in 1997 is Rs. 334914 crores which works out to about Rs.3500/- per person. (per capita foreign debt is Rs.4300/-)

Most of the developed countries have much larger per capita domestic loan than India whereas in India, external debt is higher than internal debt…….

……thee is absolutely no valid reason for not incurring more debt to Reserve Bank of India ( this is same as printing currency notes) to meet the developmental needs. The total, both domestic and foreign debt per capita comes to only about Rs.8000/-. The total debt of USA is over $ 5 trillian( $500000crores or Rs.22000000crores)(in 2004 over US$ 11 trillion) and the per capita debt is over $20000 or Rs.860000(approximate) which is about 100 times that of India. Japaese Government’s debt is US$4 trillion-$400000 crores or Rs.17500000 crore. The per capita debt is Rs.15,00,000 which is about 180 times that of India. In the case of most of the developed countries the per capita debt is much higher than in India. The countries could develop only because of the high debt and the fact that they wanted to rely on themselves……….. since Nehru’s time…the elite, intellectuals, economists, administrators etc. justify their inaction/indiffdrnce to the needs of the people, by saying that India does not have resources to undertake large projects and hence the problems of the people could not be solved.

One of the two major reasons for the economic backwardness of the country is the theory…….that India did not have resources.(the other one was that India was over populated…..these leaders did not understand that manpower is the main resource. Instead of utilizing the manpower they went about taking of reducing population growth by introducing family planning programme even as early as 1950s when the density of the population was even lower than that of many European countries.

The secod resource is land. India has sufficient cultivable land even today-i.e. even when the population has increased and the government had encroached upon fertile land for non-productive purposes..

The third resource is money. The leaders did not understand that money at that time was coins and currency notes.(In 2000s it is cheques, credit cards besides currency notes.) While coins are expensive to mint,currency notes could be printed easily by the Reserve Bank of india and the government could have borrowed from the Reserve Bank…….

Even after more than 50 years of independence,there are villages which do not have lakes and which they need and where there is possibility for lakes. Even in the 1990s/2000s, there is need and of course, scope , for thousands of canals of hundreds of kilometres etc. For these works,what is required is just simple tools which the village artisans can make,man power and cattle energy,which the country has in abundance and also local-Indian currency to which the government has unlimited access. There is no need for the government to sign Memorandum of Understanding with Reserve Bank of India on limiting deficit financing. The monetary and other policies of the government are to be decided by the elected representatives of the people and not by officials of Reserve Bank of Indian who are not answerable to the people.


Food security requires higher foodgrain prices

29/09/2012

There was a time when India had acute shortage of sugar. Then the government increased the procurement price of sugarcane and continues to increase the procurement price periodically. This has led to India becoming not only self sufficiet but also surplus in sugar.Not only this, sugarcane is one of the only 2 or 3 crops in which India’s yield is higher than world and Asian average yield.

If countries which are deficit in cereals increase procurement prices substantially,the farmers will find ways to increase the yield and production. These countries should also impose import duties on cereals to such an extent that the local produce becomes cheaper. The deficit in food grains can easily be wiped out in most of the deficit countries.

The question will arise as to how poor people who are malnourished for want of money to buy food gains shall buy at higher prices. The people do not have buying power because they do not have enough work. The govenments there should undertake massive works like digging lakes, canals, wells,laying roads, railway lines, power transmitters and lines solar power stations, hydro-electric power stations etc. Most of the west and east African countries receive over 1000 mm rainfall every year and hence increasing food grain production may not be a big problem at all.


Use of nuclear energy to build dams

12/01/2010

India uses nuclear energy mainly to produce electricity, and in medicine, food processing and food preserving

In 1965, Soviet Union used nuclear energy to create across Chagan river, a dam,called Lake Chagan, 100  meter deep,400 meter in diameter and 20-35 meter in height. India at present needs lakes and canals badly, to irrigate the lands to increase the food grain production from around 230 million mt per year to about 400 million mt i.e 300kg Per capita, per year  which is the world average. India,to start with should use nuclear energy to build such a dam across  one of  the major rivers like Godavari, Krishna and Kaveri in the South. It should also try to dig canals with the help of nuclear energy to link  two of the above mentioned rivers.

Incidentally, these efforts would refine the nuclear technology available with us beside increasing the food grain production and eliminating or minimising floods..