Freebies make the citizens irresponsible!
Government, in order to win the favor of the poor along with trying to help them get free food and cheap selective facilities, brings in subsidies and freebies. Tax payer’s money is purportedly used to bring relief to the poor and malnourished. That’s how we know we are supposed to feel big at heart when government imposes new taxes.
We have been told on numerous occasions that these freebies are supposed to bring solace and development to the underprivileged. Did it really go that way? Did it make the poor people happy and responsible enough to try harder and earn their own bread? No, it didn’t.
Right after India got its freedom there have been so many schemes for helping the poor and downtrodden. Funds were flown across the country to make living conditions favorable for these people. Free food and electricity, education and water, and what not have the government tried to provide these people. The big question is whether it has been worth the investment.Helpful:1. Malnourished:
Famine struck India was ailing and weak. People were hopeless. They needed to work in order to feed themselves but jobs were scarce. Not everyone was qualified to get the positions that would change their lives. They have multiple mouths to feed. Women and children were dying without food. Had the government not intervened with the freebie schemes, these people would have starved to death. It gave people hope and energy to work and earn something to sustain under the hard conditions that prevailed.2. Water:
The elixir of life, water should not be denied to anyone. There are people who cannot afford to pay for freshwater connections. However, they do need purified and clean water too just like anyone else. If water subsidies were not relaxed for them, they would be battling against diseases caused by lack of clean drinking water. Diarrhoea and tuberculosis was spreading like crazy in the past when people had no access to clean drinking water. Government came with the bliss of free drinking water for these people, something that was utterly necessary.3. Other subsidies:
LPG and electricity are also important necessities of life. Now that the government is asking people to voluntarily leave their LPG subsidies and those are being given out to poor people, it should not be seen as an attempt to win votes from these people. If we look at the level of pollution control that is being done by encouraging poor people to give up on the age old wood fire cooking methods, we wouldn’t question the intentions of the government behind freebies. What looks like simple freebie to us is a big help to the poor.4. Free education:
Secondary level education is free for the children of poor families. These children are also given free meals at the government schools so that they could be nourished enough to study and do something better in life. It is estimated that illiteracy can be done away with in the next ten years with if free education is made mandatory for these children and if more advanced learning opportunity is made available to them for free.5. Lowering theft:
In places of slums and other areas where poor people reside, it was earlier found that electricity theft started soaring high. There were hours when electricity was not available in these areas so people took to theft. Now if the government could make electricity available round the clock to these people at low prices, there would be no reason why people would attempt theft. If only politicians could deliver what they promise, freebies could actually help people in bringing about the much needed change in their lives.Adverse:1. Making India lazy:
It is no hidden truth that poor people are mostly addicted to drinking, gambling and other such evil that easily robs them of their hard earned money. Giving them free food and fuel makes them lazy as now they could earn and fulfill their addiction with the money and sustain on the freebies. The almost free food grain to the poor is bound to create a lot of debt in future if the government doesn’t restrict the supply. And then we go on complaining on the plight of farmers in India. Could this subsidy money not have been used in making agriculture better?2. Wastage of resources:
Free water, electricity, food and fuel could lead to wastage of resources in times to come. It is about time the government realizes the hard truth that people do not value things they get for free. Let them earn it if they are supposed to realize the importance of these resources. Water wastage is on full go throughout the year when there is no scarcity but when the season shows the bare reality, everyone gets to face the consequences.3. Scams:
Ever since independence, Indian governments have been bringing out various freebies and schemes for the poor but why has the condition of these people not changed yet? Why is there no decrease in the poverty of our country? A big part of the funds that are to be distributed to the poor goes into filling the greedy bellies of the politicians. What is the use of bringing out freebies when they don’t even reach the rightful deservers?4. Continuing forever:
The biggest drawback of these freebies is their continuity. One party starts a freebie scheme and next would have to continue giving it out since they fear losing the votes of the poor if they dare discontinue the scheme. Instead, it adds few more schemes to win the votes and so on. We have more such schemes than funds in our country. No party would dare ban the reservation system even if they know that there has been no outcome from it. It has all become for votes instead of help.
Freebies could help make the citizens responsible only when they are meant to be discontinued after a certain period of time. People ought to know that it is a limited period offer meant to help them earn and save for the future.
Continued freebie is a bane for a country. In prolonged period of time, the government can get into debts that it will not be ready to pay. We need to understand the main purpose of freebies and focus on how to implement the funds in the best possible way.