Licence and permit raj has not ended for the poor: NC Saxena

June 28, 2018
New Delhi:The licence and permit raj might have ended for the big industry but for the poor, it is still continuing, says veteran civil servant NC Saxena, a former member of the national advisory council constituted under the headship of Mrs Sonia Gandhi during the UPA rule.
Talking to India News Stream, Saxena said the maze of laws and practices that confront an ordinary entrepreneur must be simplified.
”If a farmer wants to set up a brick kiln unit, or a rice shelling plant, and even cut a tree standing on his own private field, he can’t do it without bribing several officials. A simple operation of converting prosopis (Vilayati babul in Hindi – a wild shrub occurring mostly on wastelands, which grows more the more you cut it ) into charcoal in Tamil Nadu, which can give employment to thousands of people, requires permission from the Forest Department! ,” he pointed out.
He also cited the case of of Delhi Rickshaw pullers, in which the same kind of unreasonable restrictions exist. There are about six million of them but the Delhi government has put a limit of 99000 licences, which has resulted in about half a million rickshaws operating illegally in the city.
”It is an irony that there is no limit to the number of polluting cars, whereas the eco-friendly, and cost-efficient transport providing livelihood to the poor has a ridiculously low ceiling! ”, he said.
Saxena narrated one more incident highlighting arbitrary nature of rules and regulations for the poor. Some poor women in Odisha were arrested in 1995 because they brought hill brooms from forests to their home to make brooms as they were under the rules not permitted to stock it or sell this produce to anyone else except to a government contractor
Coming to farmers, he said the same discriminatory laws exist. In almost all states except Punjab, Haryana, Assam, Andhra Pradesh (but not Telangana) and Tamil Nadu, there are tenancy laws that do not permit land being leased to tenants for agriculture.
Saxena pointed out Maharashtra goes a step further and bans even sale of agricultural land to a non-agriculturist, and in almost all states, there are provisions that agricultural land cannot be used for industrial purposes, unless written permission is taken from the authority concerned, which takes a lot of time and encourages corrupt practices.
” What happens in such a situation that politicians and land mafia operate as middlemen to facilitate getting the required permission from government for the change in land use. Both these laws need to go. Industry serves a social purpose since employment generation per unit of land is higher in non-agricultural uses than in agriculture, and therefore change of land use should be free from all hassles,”.he said.
Answering a question, he said the licence raj also acts against the street vendors.
There are 10 million street vendors in India, but low license ceiling in most cities means more vendors hawk their goods illegally, which also makes them prone to the bribery and extortion culture under local police and municipal authorities.
Though a Street Vendors Act has been passed in 2014 clearly recognising that street vendors form a very important segment of the unorganised sector, little action has been taken by the states to implement the law, he said.
”It is a sad commentary on our laws that the informal sector which provides maximum employment is mostly declared as illegal and subject to the whims of law enforcing agencies. A Committee should be set up to identify specific laws and rules which hamper entrepreneurship. A systematic review needs to be undertaken to review the areas in which government must withdraw, albeit in a phased manner, and departments which need to be wound up should be defined,” he said.
Asked about the implementation of the Food Security Act, Mr Saxena, citing NSSO data, said the per capita cereal consumption of the poor in India is lower than the desired norm and it has seen no improvement over time, despite fall in poverty levels .
The calorie and protein intake of the poorest three deciles in 2011-12 was about 30 to 50% less than the consumption of the top decile, whereas the poor need more energy for harder manual work.
He further said that owning to insufficient financial devolution to the poorer states, they were spending much less on social programmes than the rich and advanced states.
For instance, in 2016-17 government spent ₹15,657 under NREGA on each rural poor in Kerala – the least poor state in India – as against a paltry ₹688 in Bihar and 889 in UP! The number of rural poor in Bihar is six times similar number in Tamil Nadu, but expenditure on NREGA in Tamil Nadu in 2016-17 is 2.5 times that of Bihar.
He said the Ministry must earmark NREGA funds for states on the basis of poverty, just as PMGSY allocations are in proportion to state-wise shortage of rural roads.
”Poor states suffer because of this ‘free-for-all’ approach as they are not able to compete with better governed states in attracting funds from the Centre,” Saxena said.

Nora Fatehi joins ED probe in Rs 200 cr money laundering case

New Delhi : Bollywood actress Nora Fatehi on Friday joined the probe of Enforcement Directorate (ED) in the Rs 200 crore money laundering case involving multimillionaire conman Sukesh Chandrasekhar and...

Shraddha murder case: Aaftab’s post-narco test concludes

New Delhi : The post-narco test of Aaftab Amin Poonawalla, the accused in the ghastly murder of his live-in partner Shraddha Walkar in Delhi's Mehrauli area, concluded on Friday. His...

ED’s process of taking Anubrata Mondal to Delhi gets delayed further

Kolkata: The Enforcement Directorate's (ED) process to take Trinamool Congress strongman Anubrata Mondal to New Delhi for questioning in connection with the multi-crore cattle smuggling in West Bengal, got delayed further...

‘Liger’ money laundering probe: Vijay Devarakonda appears before ED

Hyderabad: Popular Tollywood actor Vijay Devarakonda on Wednesday appeared before the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in connection with the investigation relating to sourcing of funds for his recent film 'Liger'. The actor...

Bilkis Bano moves SC challenging the release of 11 convicts

New Delhi: Bilkis Bano has moved the Supreme Court against the release of 11 men convicted of gang-raping her in the 2002 Gujarat riots. Advocate Shobha Gupta, representing Bano, mentioned the...

Aaftab confesses to killing Shraddha during polygraph test

New Delhi: Aaftab Amin Poonawalla confessed to killing his live-in partner Shraddha Walkar and disposing off her body parts during his polygraph test conducted at the Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) in...

Wanted UP SP MLA booked for travelling on forged Aadhaar

Kanpur (Uttar Pradesh) : The absconding Samajwadi Party MLA Irfan Solanki has been booked for boarding a New Delhi to Mumbai flight on a forged Aadhaar card on November 11....

6 killed, 15 injured in bus-truck collision in UP district

Bahraich (UP) : At least six people were killed and 15 others injured when a bus collided with a truck in Tappe Sipah area of Bahraich district on Wednesday. The...

Delhi court sends two men who attacked Aaftab’s van to 14-day judicial custody

New Delhi: A Delhi court on Tuesday sent the two attackers, who were among the group of men that encircled Aaftab Poonawalla's van, to 14 days of judicial custody. The weapon-wielding...

Mehrauli murder: Delhi Police to seek court’s permission for narco test on Aaftab

New Delhi: Delhi Police will seek court's permission to conduct narco test on Shraddha murder case accused Aaftab Amin Poonawalla on December 1, Special Commissioner of Police (law & order), Sagar...

Love story of five elderly men ends in murder in Bihar’s Nalanda

Patna: A case of love story involving four elderly men and a 30-year-old widow tea vendor turned ugly when a fifth old person also exhibited interest in the woman which led...

RTI activist beaten to death for making queries

Aligarh:  An RTI activist was beaten to death allegedly by eight men, including the village head and his son, in Uttar Pradesh's Aligarh district for questioning the quality of public...

Read Previous

Delhi’s green brigade achieves major success

Read Next

BJP using surgical strikes as ”political fodder” for votes: Cong

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

WP2Social Auto Publish Powered By : XYZScripts.com