Elections, Facts and Fiction, Humor, In real life, Issues in India, P U Krishnan, Politics in India

Freebies, freebies, all the way!

There seems to be a surfeit of freebies in some states in India. The list of such items is too long to repeat them here. Most of the items are meant for students who are supposed to be poor and down-trodden. Of late, freebies have transcended all limits and it is almost ‘free for all’. Since there are innumerable political parties in each state, it is difficult for the senior or recognized parties to capture power and , once they are there at the helm, the struggle to retain it starts from day one. Not long ago, the party in power would make a huge list of welfare measures which would benefit the public at large—development of infrastructure, supply of certain essential commodities through government-run shops etc were some of them; but the opposition parties can easily misrepresent facts so that the ordinary people would be under the impression that they have not gained any personal benefits. So, the parties in power [in some states, of course] realized the fact that there is more in individual benefits than meet the eyes; and the result was freebies ranging from cycles to other expensive items to each and every family. The poor and downtrodden get a “rich and uplifted” feeling and they take a vow, “we are with you…long live…”

But the party in power may get itself tangled up in a web of troubles when the next elections are round the corner. The opposition may have succeeded in reversing people’s loyalty to the existing government on the eve of the elections…but the ruling party plays the freebies card again. This time it is some other expensive items [announced through election manifesto].

But all said and done, freebies make the people less active or ambitious and more complacent; and they are unaware of the consequences.

Author: P U Krishnan

First things first. I am one of those retired chaps who are young at heart. I watch cricket matches and jump for joy when Tendulkar scores yet another century. I read newspapers and books too, though I am not crazy about them. I think I have a mind free from hatred and I owe it to the wonders of nature and music. I scribble something now and then and call myself a writer! Though I have settled in Ooty, a lovely hill station in Tamil Nadu—I must emphasize the fact that I was born and brought up in Tellicherry in North Kerala and studied in the good old Government Brennen College. Of and on, my mind goes back to my ancestral house at Tiruvangad in Tellicherry in front of an ancient Sri Ram temple. I am indebted to this wonderful place which inculcated in me a love for cricket and literature. But all said and done, I am an Indian first.

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