Over the past few days, there have been tens of articles and thousands of comments about how AAPs decision to provide free water and 50% cheaper electricity are misguided and do not make economic sense.
The merits and demerits sure can be debated, and that is beauty of AAP that people are debating it. Never in my life have I seen people debating so fervently whether free water makes sense?
But one line of thought that really really confuses me is when BJP supporters use this and claim that AAP is more left than the left itself and BJP is a better choice, apparently because it is against subsidy.
So I decided to look around to see BJP’s policies
So here we go, a list of things from BJP manifestos
- Reduce price of electricity by 30%(By Competition, CAG and RTI– No Idea how 30% figure was reached but they promised to reduce by 30%)
- Reign in price of onions and tomatoes in 30 days(No hint on how)
- Free essential medicines to all Delhi residents for life
- Twenty five kg of rice at Rs one for all poor families( frequency etc not specified)
- Free Laptop to all university students(may require 4000 crores BTW)
- Free wifi and internet to all schools and colleges
- Free smartphones to all students(college)
- Free/subsidized bus passes for students
- Government to pay rent of students staying in private hostels
- Debt waiver for farmers
- 50 percent subsidy on water pumps for small and medium farmers
- Life insurance and rice at Re. 1 per kilo for those below the poverty line
- Interest-free loans for peasants
- Rice at one rupee a kilogramme will be provided to 42 lakh poor families
- Free power supply (for 5 hp pumps)
- Free laptops and tablets to students in the first year of their college(Engineering and Medical)
- Free Tablets to the science and arts stream students
And these are just 4 states , and these sops and populist measures(as AAP is being accused of) are being doled out in each and every state.
Are subsidies bad? The opinion is divided on it, I for one believe that some subsidies are necessary , yes giving cheaper food to poor is one of the things that I personally support.
BJP and congress have delved into this subsidy business for a loooong time, they are neither averse and neither new to this. But like their performance, their manifestos are also dubious, without accountability .
When other parties make such claims ,most people(Our internet savvy junta) just ignore it and assume that nothing is really going to happen ,or , “sale khaa jayenge sab” (They will eat away all the money) . The problem with AAP is that it is delivering and that too too fast for many people to digest.
End note: A few BJP supporters commented that AAP is against FDI in retail , hence they are commi and hence vote for Namo, BTW BJP is also against FDI in retail, at least on paper.
You may debate the economic merits and need of measures taken by AAP, but please do read the manifestos of your own party before making comparisons.
BJP Trolls: You may now start abusing