Skip to main content

Gujarat model is negation of right to information, work, food, education, health: Pro-Modi economist

Modi with top tycoons 
By Our Representative
The eulogy of “Gujarat model” in the midst of Lok Sabha polls has begun to find pro-Narendra Modi economists to come with new ideas. One of them, Prof R Vaidyanathan of the Indian Institute of Management-Bangalore (IIM-B), has gone to the extent of saying that the steps taken by the UPA government by seeking to confer “new rights on the people” through “right to information, right to work (MNREGA), right to food, right to education, and now right to health” are only extensions of “the massively corrupt system refused to die and the Frankenstein state, created over 60 years.”
Refusing to say whether these important steps should be dropped, Prof Vaidyanathan, in a recent commentary has nevertheless said that they have proved to be nothing but an effort by the state “seeking new ways to retain the system of loot based on public resources”. They are only part of the “moth-eaten state structure has been unable to cater to these rights, and people, anyway, found ways to buy their way into the system”, he adds.
Prof Vaidyanathan, who is likely to one of the key Modi choices in the new economic advisory body under him in case he becomes Prime Minister, further says, “Huge resources are being devoted to sustaining these rights”, and those who are gaining are “klepto capitalists” (a term used for those with characteristics of compulsion to steal). These klepto capitalists have “found ways to manipulate the free market and the state to fatten themselves”, he adds.
Prof Vaidyanathan says that it against this “bleak and degenerate scenario” that the country witnessed what he calls “the emergence of the Gujarat model with an alternate vision of a new polity, enabled by a minimal state”. He adds, “The idea has always been around – with the late C Rajagopalachari being one of its backers – but in essence the Gujarat model is about having the state play a lesser role, and the people a larger one.”
Describing the “Gujarat model” as “simple”, the economist defines it as something under which "entrepreneurship is encouraged and celebrated". He adds, the Gujarat model ensures that "people should have huge opportunities for employment, but not necessarily in government jobs. Individuals and families should work/earn/eat and live on their own efforts instead of depending on a benevolent state. Individuals are responsible for their actions.”
Vaidyanathan
Claiming that the Gujarat model is not about social indicators, which are being used by its opponents to prove how it has not been successful, Prof Vaidyanathan further elucidates it as follows: “The concept of a small state means having fewer regulations and more self-regulation. A self-regulatory framework policed by an effective law enforcement machinery which guarantees swift and severe punishment for violations can be the best form of governance.”
This “Gujarat model” seeks to provide 24 hour power, according to Prof Vaidyanathan, and it stands in sharp contrast to what he calls the “Bengal model” – which seeks to “provide power free or with heavy subsidies – with the people getting more power cuts rather than power”. He adds, “Unfortunately, the Bengal model has become the norm all over India. It is the Gujarat model, whatever its shortcomings, that offers a different paradigm and different set of possibilities.”
Calling the Bengal model as the legacy of Jawaharlal Nehru’s model of the “heavy-handed state” which “had the backing of Bengali intellectuals like PC Mahalanobis”, Prof Vaidyanathan says, “It has failed miserably”, and now time has come to “take up the freedom oriented Gujarat model.” He adds, “The country opted for economic planning under the tutelage of PC Mahalanobis and Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru”, underlining, “We essentially opted for the Soviet model in Devnagari script.”
“The entire planning process and the role of the state was hijacked by different shades of Left-wing thinkers, with some criticising the others for not being adequately red. From Mahalanobis downwards, Bengali intellectuals played a very large role in this leftward tilt for more than 40 years and, during the entire period, economists from the other side were denied space or official patronage”, Prof Vaidyanathan says.
Under Nehru, he says, what one saw was the evolution of a “rights-based society”, adding, “Some sections of the middle class lapped it up, since the Soviet Union gave legitimacy to this draconian idea and the public sector provided job opportunities to the educated. Nehru called public sector units the temples of modern India. The system was built on layers of regulations and a solid licence-permit-quota raj was created to administer it all.”
“Entrepreneurship was frowned upon and profit became a dirty word. Businessmen were derided as banias and metaphorically threatened with hanging from the nearest lamp-post. For example, price increases have always been blamed on hoarding by banias – the solution to inflation is thus to go after the banias”, Prof Vaidyanathan says.

Comments

MAGP said…
Prof. Vaidyanathan,
When you are saying that "Giving rights" to people is problematic, then i believe you have some data to support your statement.

Can you share the data on the basis on the basis of which you say, RTI (which is one of the most progressive legislation) is meaningless.

While I agree to your view that corrupt elements makes their way in the system, as system do not implement these legislation, however i am surprised to that you linked it to conclude that "We should not have progressive and pro-community legislation itself.

Right to Information gives access to information with public authorities in a specific time. It seeks transparency, and accountability from the public authorities. While "Self regulatory" mechanisms mentioned by you seems good on paper, i cannot imagine (even in my dream) that common citizen in Gujarat files a complaint of not getting drinking water with municipality is heard even after weeks time(this is suppose to be resolved within 24 hrs) untill she/he files RTI application to why it was not resolved? who is responsible? who is suppose to do it? etc...

Last year DOPT has issued circular which says that travel expenses of CM and ministers has to be pro-actively disclosed on their website. Gujarat CM office is still to do this.

While i can pose many questions on your appreciation/certification of "Gujarat Model" I am restricting myself just to first part and expect you to immediately share the copies of studies, reports, data, figures of survey held (if any),case stories, and your analysis which forms the base for your statements.

Pankti Jog
Mahiti Adhikar Gujarat Pahel
Gujarat

TRENDING

IMA vs Ramdev: Why what's good or bad for goose should be good or bad for gander

By Dr Amitav Banerjee, MD* Baba Ramdev and his associate Balkrishna faced the wrath of the Supreme Court for their propaganda about their Ayurvedic products and belittling mainstream medicine. Baba Ramdev had to apologize in court. His apology was not accepted and he may face the contempt of court with harsher punishment. The Supreme Court acted on a public interest litigation (PIL) moved by the Indian Medical Association (IMA).

Women innovators on simple, revolutionary alternate solutions for water problems

By Proshakha Maitra, Mansee Bal Bhargava* The detrimental effects of uncontrolled population rise and accelerated change in the global climate have posed tremendous pressure on the water and sanitation. This calls all stakeholders, from both developed and developing nations, to improve their resilience and to instigate sustainability. It is more crucial than ever to optimise the use of the resources we have on hand since the world population is projected to reach 9.7 billion by 2050.

Magnetic, stunning, Protima Bedi 'exposed' malice of sexual repression in society

By Harsh Thakor*  Protima Bedi was born to a baniya businessman and a Bengali mother as Protima Gupta in Delhi in 1949. Her father was a small-time trader, who was thrown out of his family for marrying a dark Bengali women. The theme of her early life was to rebel against traditional bondage. It was extraordinary how Protima underwent a metamorphosis from a conventional convent-educated girl into a freak. On October 12th was her 75th birthday; earlier this year, on August 18th it was her 25th death anniversary.

Alleged killing of another Bangladesh youth inside Indian territory: NHRC inquiry sought

By Kirity Roy* There was yet another incident of the killing of a Bangladeshi youth by the Border Security Force personnel attached with ‘Barthar’ BOP of ‘G’ Company of 75 BSF Battalion. In last five years several incidents of killings happened under this police station’s jurisdiction and the cases will get the award as “Not Guilty” as usual.

Modi model, Hindutva icon 'justified' alliance with Muslim League before Independence

By Shamsul Islam*  Our PM describes himself as ‘Hindu’ nationalist and member of RSS. He proudly shares the fact that he was groomed to be a political leader by one of the two fathers of the Hindutva politics, MS Golwalkar (the other being VD Savarkar) and given the task of establishing Hindutva polity in India after eradicating secularism.

A Hindu alternative to Valentine's Day? 'Shiv-Parvati was first love marriage in Universe'

By Rajiv Shah*   The other day, I was searching on Google a quote on Maha Shivratri which I wanted to send to someone, a confirmed Shiv Bhakt, quite close to me -- with an underlying message to act positively instead of being negative. On top of the search, I chanced upon an article in, imagine!, a Nashik Corporation site which offered me something very unusual. 

Crusader for people’s causes, this Hollywood actor entered 'unexplored zones' in US

By Harsh Thakor*  Marlon Brando on April 3rd completes his birth centenary. He perished in 2004, on July 1, aged 80 years. Arguably in Hollywood Brando penetrated sensitivity and versatility at an unparalleled scale and discovered new horizons or explored path breaking zones in acting.

Nuclear power expansion: Is AEC's new, 'unrealistic' target fully backed by PMO?

By Shankar Sharma*  Another unrealistic and tall claim by Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) has been announced: India is eyeing 100 GW nuclear power by 2047, the AEC chairman  AK Mohanty   has said. A few years ago, the dream target for the Indian nuclear establishment was 275,000 MWe of nuclear power by 2050 (as per DAE document of 2008 "A Strategy for the Growth of Electricity in India”). Now this target of 100 GW nuclear power by 2047. And as at the end of February 2024, the actual nuclear power capacity was only 7,480 MWe, which formed only 1.7% of the total power capacity in the country. 

How huge crowd at Mukhtar Ansari funeral is comparable to BJP's 'people's court' talk

By Vidya Bhushan Rawat*  The massive crowd at the funeral of Mukhtar Ansari in Mohammadabad reflects the power and influence that his family wields in the area. One can't deny that he had enormous power in Ghazipur and Mau districts. But the crowd that came and chanted slogans in his favour does not exonerate him of his conviction by the court.  It is important that we understand this. 

'Critical for cultural and ecological security': Ladakh women seek statehood, self-rule

By Our Representative Six Ladakhi women from different organisations in the region, who concluded their 10 day fast, have told an online press conference that it is necessary to provide statehood to Ladakh, even as declaring the region under the 6th schedule, for “deepening democracy, preserving ecology, and for survival.” Feminists across India joined the media meet in solidarity with the Ladakh movement “for 6th schedule, statehood and justice.”