Tackling worst drought in Tamilnadu


If I am in power, I will take the following steps to over come the impact of drought,

  1. Not only remove all restrictions on digging bore wells but will also encourage and assist people to dig bore wells. Ground water level will go down but this does not matter, as when it rains the water level will automatically come up. Government will also dig bore wells near water bodies like lakes, canals etc.
  2. Wherever and whenever it is possible, artificial rain(cloud seeding) will be tried.
  3. Water areas like wells, rivers, lakes, canals, water passages will be dredged which may lead to more ground water
  4. farmers will be advised to refrain from planting crops like paddy which require a lot of water and cultivate drought resistant crops like ragi
  5. Without any elaborate application from farmers, their lands will be provided with drip irrigation system and sprinkler irrigation system.
  6. Panchayat, municipal and corporation waste water will be treated and used for irrigation.
  7. As a long term measure, desalination plants will be established along the coast.





Work will be provided to all able bodied and willing persons(RIGHT TO EMPLOYMENT) at reasonable wages of Rs.200 per day for 7 hours work for women and Rs.400 per day for men in agricultural sector. In other sectors, wages will be guided by the nature, hardship etc of work, In a month, work will be provided for 20 days a month. This will mean a minimum wages of Rs. Rs.12000/ per family of two working persons per month.(one male and one female worker)

Employment opportunities in manufacturing and service sectors will be created through private enterprises by extending facilities, concessions etc to the private sector.

The educated unemployed people will be given training free of cost in trades for which there is demand

In the past -in 50s and 60s,the minimum qualification required for admission to most of the trades in Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) is pass in 8th Class, while at present only for a very few-one or two-courses the minimum qualification required is 8th Class, while for the rest, it is 10th class. Similarly one could go for Teachers Training course after passing 8th class, to be able to teach in primary schools, while at present it is pass in 12th class. With a view to bring more people to work force, government would reduce minimum qualification required for admission to ITIs and Teachers’ Training Institutes to 8th class. This will make workers/teachers available for work for longer periods

The school education now consists of 5 years of primary education, 3 years higher elementary education,2 years high school and 2 years higher secondary school education, making a total of 12 years. This will be reduced initially to 11 years and later to 10 years. One should go for university education- degree course in Arts, science, medicine etc after completing 10 years of school education. Thls will make available to the state about 10% additional work force.

In India, life expectancy at birth has increased to about 67 years now (2011) from around 32 in 1951. Correspondingly the retirement age should also go up. Government would increase retirement age to 65.This alone will increase the strength of the work force by about 10% – 15%

A large number of Teachers Training Institutes(TTIs) were established a few years ago in Tamilnadu and a very large number of elementary and high school teachers were trained. Most of the “teachers” have not got jobs and many of them have already waited for even 10 years to get jobs. Consequently the number of candidates opting for these courses has decreased and some of the institutes have already been closed causing loss of lot of money. Individuals’ loss ultimately is loss to the state. Candidates trained to become teachers will now be trained free of cost for jobs in manufacturing and service sectors.

More Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) will be established and many technicians will be  “produced”. Making it easy to the factories and the people to secure the services of technicians and that to at affordable cost.

The mandate of the Employment Exchanges would be extended from just sponsoring candidates against vacancies to actively associating themselves in training the manpower for anticipated vacancies in various sectors of the economy. The present unemployed persons will be trained free of cost in skills for which there is demand now.

There is a shortage of labour in several sectors in Tamilnadu. To make available workers to the industry etc. our government would:

increase the age limit for giving old age pension from 60 years to 65 years and above

reduce the age limit of children for employment

adopt some kind of discrimination against able bodied people who refuse to work,  in the matter of grant of concessions etc

increase the working hours to atleast 8 hours a day in sectors where it is lower than this

strict punishment for petty thefts, trespassing by people, cattle etc, so that unproductive labour by watching (watchmen’s work) could be moved to productive sectors

motivating people to be sincere in and committed to work, so that the supervision could be minimised and supervisors could be employed more productively

curtailing freebies so that people would be forced to put in more work to earn more to meet the requirements of money,

There was a time when Indians used to take pride that illiterate mechanics, masons, carpenters, plumbers, electricians, etc did a wonderful job by learning from seeing and working with experienced people. Now one finds that the quality of work of mechanics etc. is poor and quantum of output is very low. It appears that like in developed countries, students should study at vocational training institutes all the trades mentioned above as well as trades like laundry, hair cutting, domestic work, serving in restaurants etc. A student completes 8th class at the age of 13 and thereafter goes to vocational institutes for period of 2 years. They can go for jobs from the age of 15. The minimum qualification for recruitment to the post of Lower Division Clerk is pass in 12th class. In Tamilnadu, a person completes his 12th class at the age of 17. So, the minimum age for recruitment to the post should be kept at 17 instead of 18. Even elementary school teachers used to be available for jobs from the age of 15 after 8 years of studies in general schools and 2 years course in training. By reducing the minimum age for recruitment at a low level, each person can work 2-3 years more during the life time.

With the longevity increasing, people can work up to the age of 65. By increasing the age of retirement to 65 years, each person can work for 5-7 years more, during the life time.

If a state/country is to progress, the first thing to do is to utilize all the available resources and manpower.

No able bodied person should remain without work even for short periods. One should work at least for 8 hours a day and six days in a week.

Of late, there is excess emphasis on not employing children in any work at all at any time. The first priority for the children is to study. But it does not mean that they should not do any work. If they  do not get used to work as children, many of them may become a burden on their families, society and the country when they are grown up. A child may go to school from 9.00 hours to 16.00 hours. On return from school, the child may do home work for about one hour, play for about one hour and help the mother or father or other elders for about two hours. In fact, if they work with elders for about 2 hours; they do not need to play for physical fitness.

Similarly the senior citizens, i.e those above 55/60 years of age, need not sit idle. They  would be provided with opportunities to do appropriate work as long as they can – it can be even till 80 years. There is no harm if an aged person does some work so long as he enjoys doing work and feels proud in contributing to family’s income. The GDP of the state will grow with more people working.

Unproductive work like that of watchmen, security staff etc should be kept to the minimum. For this purpose, crimes like thefts, violence, teasing, terrorism would be dealt with severely, so as to curb such activities. Further, people would be made to shun all vices and acquire virtues.

Artificial rain- cloud seeding


In certain parts of Tamilnadu, during June-August,2015,the rainfall has been so negligible that farming operations have not been undertaken. If the rain starts in September, it may in some cases be too late for sowing certain seeds.Even drinking water for humans and animals has become a big problem. In order to ensure timely rainfall, it may 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 should 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, particulary in Asia like Thailand, China etc are resorting to cloud seeding. Each district should have one organisation to udertake this operation. It can be a public or private organisation.

Population of Tamilnadu-child population


Population of Tamilnadu in 2011 of 72.1 million accounts for about 5.9% of India’s population of 1210 million. Tamilnadu is the 7th largest state in the country behind UP, Bihar, West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh,Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh. However, the population of children of Tamilnadu of 0-6 years, is only 6.89 million which works out to only 4.3% of the total child population of 158.7 million. It ranks 9th largest behind Rajasthan, UP, Bihar, West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh. In the normal course, Tamilnadu’s population in India’s population would also in future come to around 4.4%. But this level of population will not be able to maintain the fairly large industry, agriculture and service sector in the state. There will naturally be migration from densly populated states like Bihar, UP, West Bengal and low income states like Orissa. To sustain the industry, agriculture and service sector development, the state should devise ways and means to permanently absorb the population from other states by creating necessary conditions like extending education in mother tongue to the migrant children, providing all facilities and concessions to them as are being given to local population like free rations, clothing, house sites, houses etc.

Tamilnadu voters’ list- discrepancies


The population of Tamilnadu as per the 2011 census is 7.21 crores. The population of children in the age group of 0-14 in Tamilnadu is around 35% as per the earlier census.
The population of those in the age group 15-18 is more than 5%. Thus the population of people less than 18 years is about 40%. In other words the population of people above the age 18 years, who are eligible to vote, would be only about 60% of the total population. This comes to 4.326 or 4.33 crores. But according to Government figures as reported in the media, the number of voters in Tamilnadu is over 5.00 crores. Assuming an increase of over 1 % during the period of one year since the census was taken in 2011, the voters’ list should contain a maximum of 4.40 crores names. Thus the latest voters’ list prepared by the government seems to contain around 60 lakhs additional names which need to be corrected.

Further the population figures include a large number of immigrant workers from other states like Bihar, Orissa, Jharkhand, Assam, West Bengal, Kerala etc. Most of these workers are unlikely to have registered as voters in Tamilnadu, as they would have registered in their native states. Thus the voters’ list contains much more than 60 lakhs extra names which need to be removed.

Tamilnadu population 2011-natural growth and immigration


According to provisional 2011 census data, the population of Tamilnadu state, India increased during 2001-2011 by 97 lakh(9.7million) from 6.24 crores(62.4 million) to 7.21 crores. The birth rate was 15.3 per 1000, death rate was 7.6/1000 and the natural increase was 8.6/1000. The natural increase works out to 53 lakhs, the balance of 44 lakhs being net immigaration(incoming migration-outgoing migration) from neighbouring states and mostely from high population growth states like Bihar, Jharkhand etc. But for the immigrants, the economy of Tamilnadu would have been in very bad shape. There would have been no growth at all. Does this mean that there is shortage of labour?

Actually, the economy has not expanded so much as to lead to labour shortage.(In fact even with immigrants,the economy has not grown as much as it could have been) What has happened is that a large number of people of Tamilnadu have been taken away from the labour force because of the so called welfare measure of the government of Tamilnadu, like free food items, free clothig, free shelter, free schooling etc(Free medical treatment however is necessary). Because of the freebies, a person needs to work only fo 4-5days in a month to earn for his requirements For the rest of the days, people are made to lie idle. Hence, there has been need for people from other states to migrate to Tamilnadu.

The migrants who drive the growth engine of the state need to be looked after better. They have to be provided with all the welfare measures as are the local people. The goverment should allot house sites to them on a priority basis. In other words, government should encourage these migrants to settle in Tamilnadu permanently so that the farmers will intensify agriculture, industriliast will think of expanding their busiesses,service providers will enlarge their activities. Simultaneously, the government should minimise the welfare measures, so that the local labour is also fully available for agricultural, industrial and other activities.

Poor Performance of Tamilnadu on agricultural front


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.

The reasons for the slow growth in production in Tamilnadu are:

• unremunerative prices for agricultural products resulting from high cost of agricultural labour.

• insufficient water for irrigation. During rainy season, large quantity of water flows into the sea without irrigating fields, as water is released from reservoirs even though not required, for want of storage space. So the urgent need is to construct more reservoirs which could be even underground reservoirs if necessary.

• During rainy season, large quantity of water stagnates in shallow ditches. This water evaporates in 15-20 days after the rainy season. The period of stagnation is short and the depth of ditches is low and these do not permit recharge of underground water. What is required is to drain this water into nearby lakes where lakes exist nearby or to construct lakes in suitable area.

• Fertilizer use is satisfactory. In addition, there is enough manure by way of cow dung, chicken refuse, dry and green leaves etc.

Money, Printing of Currency Notes, Inflation (contd)


Excerpt from the manuscript “What Ails Indian Economy?”

Coinage is said to have been invented by the Chinese only around 700 BC. Paper currency is believed to have been invented, again, by the Chinese only around the 11thcentury AD. For trade between countries, even as late as 16th century AD, barter system was used.

At present Indian currency notes are issued by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI)/Ministry of Finance (central government). If more money is required more currency notes could be issued by the RBI and the government could borrow from them. Under the heading INTERNAL DEBT, it was seen that the per capita debt of the government is only Rs.8000 in India, while it is Rs.860, 000 in USA and Rs.1500 000 in Japan. To start with, Government could borrow an additional amount of Rs.100, 000 per head. The total per capita debt would go up to only Rs.108,000 which is just about 12% of per capita debt in USA and about 7% of per capita debt in Japan. By the additional borrowing, the government can mobilize capital of Rs. 1,00,00,000 crores. At an average wage rate of Rs.70 per head in rural areas,( the wage rate per day for a male worker is Rs.50- 70 and for female worker, it isRs.25-30 and for a supervisor around Rs.100 in states like Tamilnadu), this amount will be sufficient to pay wages for about 140000 crores man days. But under the heading EXCESS POPULATION/ LABOUR, for the massive works, the estimated man-days of labour required is only 5165 crores (51650 million). After meeting expenses on wages, there will be large amount of money which can be used for purchase of all the required materials, tools, etc, as also for undertaking other works.

If Japan and USA can manage with large internal debt, there is no reason why India cannot mange with much lower internal debt of Rs.108000 per head. All consequences of inflation etc. have to be tackled as and when they rise, but in anticipation and fear of inflation, internal borrowings need not be limited to the abysmally low figure, thereby depriving the people of work and means of livelihood. Fear of inflation should also not lead to the country’s GDP remaining at a very low level- among the lowest in the world.

From the above it is clear that there is no real shortage of capital and money in the country for undertaking huge projects and for providing buying power to the people

(written about 10 years ago)

(to be continued.)

What is good governance?


In all the recent bye-elections to the state legislative assembly in Tamilnadu, the ruling party or the member of its alliance won. The ruling party sought and obtained the votes on its performance, mainly  of giving to the people (who are also voters) free of cost, colour televisions, cooking gas connection and stove, 2 acres of arable land (to several landless people), house sits, houses, clothes(dhotis and sarees), marriage grant, child allowance,. mid-day meals, bus-passes, bicycles, books, uniforms, etc. to the school children as well as supplying rice at Re.1/a kilogram against its market price of  Rs.10 to Rs.15. The ruling party credits its victories to the aforesaid welfare schemes of the government.

Other political parties in the state, ADMK, Communist parties, PMK. MDMK, DMDK, VCK .etc have no objection to the ruling DMK party’s above mentioned welfare schemes

Not only in Tamilnadu, but in all other states also, all or most of the political parties are for such welfare schemes as above.

Now, the question that arises, is whether good governance means, taking care of the basic and entertainment and other needs of the people from government funds, directly

 or using the government funds judicially

to control crime,

to provide infrastructure for delivering quality education and medical treatment,

to provide good roads,

to keep the roads and streets clean,

to provide clean drinking water, 

to ensure uninterrupted electric supply,

to encourage higher agricultural and industrial production,

and thereby create jobs for all

Mahatma Gandhi said that no one should give to a healthy person, things free, but should instead provide him work which would make him work and enable him to buy his requirements.

 There is a need for a debate on what is good governance.

Increase size of the Police Force to reduce crime


The Police Force is not adequate in any of the Indian states. For example, in Tamilnadu state for a population of 65 million, there are only 8,5000 Police personnel. This works out to one Police person for a population of about 750. This is not adequate, particularly because of high crime rates, deployment of large number of personnel for VIP protection and shortage of sophisticated equipment and transport. In many of the developed countries, the Police- Population ratio is one is to 250. The strength of the Police Force in India should be doubled, if not tripled.

The Police Force should be proactive. Finance companies cheating their depositors is a frequent news item for the last several years. While it is mainly the greed which makes people believe in promises of unbelievable returns on deposits, a dedicated Police Wing could follow advertisements in the media, posters etc and seek explanation from the companies as to how they would fulfill their promises. Action could be initiated wherever necessary.

Another frequent news item is the cheating by recruitment agencies, promising to get lucrative jobs in foreign countries. The Police should ask for the relevant documents from such agencies and get them verified from concerned Embassies/High Commissions.

For each 500 people, there should be 2 local friends of police who would report matters of relevance to the Police on a regular basis. Police should take suitable action on these reports. The Police should have records of all the people – their names, addresses, jobs, approximate income, the people living outside the locality, their whereabouts, work, remittances to home etc. and the lifestyle of the people and make use of these records. Thus crime could be reduced to a large extent.