OPEN LETTER TO SHRI NARENDRA MODI

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This Earth is a life ground for all living and non-living things which need suitable environment to survive and grow.  Life survives and prospers on availability of natural resources.

Subjects of the Plant kingdom depend solely on nature to survive, while subjects of the Animal kingdom use their effort to build their nest and habitat, protect territory and secure food supplies.

Human beings go beyond their animal counterparts and strive for development to better their life.  We need development and rich nature alongside to lead a decent life on earth.  Over the ages Human civilization has developed into nations.  Each nation has developed at its own pace, delivering or to deliver quality & comfort of life at its own time.

Life in developed countries is more convenient, more comfortable because they have all the needed infrastructure, services and personnel and keep adding new ones at a demand and supply pace.  While life in developing countries is full of hardships due to lack of amenities needed to lead a decent life.  In other words Human life as a civilization is dependent on development.  The more developed better the life.  For example, Mr. A lives in a one room house with erratic water and power supply, no proper toilets, lack of furniture.  His locality has potted roads, and travelling in his city bus is hot and dusty.  Over time with better income he manages to improve his living condition one by one, gets regular power and water supply, renovates his house, gets his own air conditioned car and the roads have been paved.  All this take several years of life.

Imagine what he achieved working several years of his life what if it would be available from day one. He could go further in life. Compare this case with a nation – a developing nation having erratic power and water supply, potted roads, hard to travel mode of transport, poor education and health care, lack of opportunities for jobs and wealth creation, civic amenities in bad shape and many others.  Over time things improve, change from bad to better but the pace of development does not meet the demand and supply mechanism.  What was required from day one, happened 10 or 20 years later, it even took more time.  And many things are still in the medieval ages.  Many developments have happened but lack co-ordination to complete the cycle.

Why can’t we have all infrastructure and amenities ready in a specified period of time.  Lack of funds would be an obvious answer.  What about lack of Vision.  Both vision and funds are vital.

Considering building a country as a project similar to building a residential colony or industrial complex, would we build and dwell with incomplete amenities?  That would be a shame.

What we need is a VISION, a planned & systematic approach of what we would like our country to be, how its systems need to function.  Just like we build a project and consider every aspect of it, plan and execute it, make it running, manage it, similarly we can build and renovate our country – build all required infrastructure, manage its system and make it running smooth, all this with the objective to make life better and more comfortable for all.

Our focus here is on India 2014 onwards.  And I am addressing Bhartiya Janta Party with respected Shri Narender Modi as future Prime Minister.

Let me summarize what I just illustrated above.  Human life needs development, which in turn needs vision and funds.

We are talking here of developing the whole country every state, every city, every town, every village, not in bits and pieces but One comprehensive plan which will cover every part of the country and change every aspect of our life.

We need to build, build and build.   What is built has be managed & maintained efficiently.

Infrastructure development – We need everything.

Roads – Dust free roads and highways network running throughout the country.  We need public transport to travel comfortably on these roads.  Just like we have airlines we can have Buslines of various companies covering the great landmass with Tour buses for travelling comfort.  Bus stations can be owned and operated separately from Buses.  It is not a new idea it is prevalent in many countries and to some extent in our country too.  Having Busways will help to lessen the load of our railways.  Presently railways is the only economical mode of transportation for long distance or interstate journeys.  An efficient Busway to cover thousand kilometers overnight is required.

 

Railway – Although India has an extensive railway network it is not enough to the needs of the day as most long distance traffic travels by rail.

We need Double track rail network on all major routes in one go.  We cannot wait to have it one by one.  All incoming and outgoing rail tracks in a city should be elevated. Again this alone is not enough.

We need Hi-speed rail connecting all major cities in all parts of the countries.  We can’t wait to have one by one, we need to connect all 1st tier and 2nd tier cities. Delhi – Kolkatta – Chennai – Banglore – Mumbai, ect. All state capitals.

Again Rail stations can be operated separately from Raillines.  And yet again we can have several Raillines just as we have airlines. The idea of separating the two is to invite private participation of funds and resources.  Railtracks can be owned & operated separately too.

We can look forward to neat and clean, well managed Rail stations just like airports.        “Only passengers on platform.”

Metros and skytrains for cities with high population cities.

 

Air Travel – We need to build and operate airports in every city of the country.  There is plenty of traffic waiting to fly.  Again airports can be privately managed.

 

Town planning – Most of our cities our not well kept.  We need clean and orderly cities with dust free roads, underground drainage system, underground electricity and telephone wiring, public lighting, smooth flowing traffic system, 24hrs clean water & electricity supply, efficient garbage collection system, public parks, libraries, landsacping etc.

 

Power supply – Life without power is dull and economic activity is just not possible without it. No matter what, human beings need 24 hrs power supply for a cheerful life.  All available options should be used to generate and supply power to the people.

 

Clean Rivers and waterways – All our rivers, lakes and canals have to be neat and clean, well maintained and landscaped.  We can also use our rivers for travel and transport.  Imagine Varanasi neat and clean, with a landscaped Ganga.

 

Public health – Public hospitals have to be well equipped and well managed with maximum convenience to the public.  Health is not limited to cure, prevention of illness, by maintaining a healthy body and mind through proper Nutrition & exercise habits have to be promoted.

National Health Insurance – Free of cost treatment should be made available to all.

 

Education – We need well managed public schools with free education form kindergarden to class 12.  Schools have to be well equipped, teachers well trained.  Student focused education.  It is very necessary to have very good primary and secondary levels of education.

We need to produce skilled tradesmen through polytechnics.

State run Graduate & post graduate studies have to be made excellent.

All educational institutes must maintain a benchmark.

 

Rural development – all infrastructures for crop production needs to put in place – irrigation, power, markets, roads, crop storage and processing facility.  We need a strong an efficient Agriculture Dept.  Each area should be supervised by a capable Agriculture chief who with his extensive knowledge and dept. resources should be able to guide the farmers in their crop production and animal husbandry.

It is no secret that Agriculture is a non-profit livelihood.  On the other hand agriculture production is a necessity as we all need to eat.  The nation needs to be self-dependent to feed its people.  If we want the agri-workforce to stick to their trade we need to support them by offering some kind of subsidy on their crop as well.

 

Water Management – We have to prevent our rivers from flooding and on the other hand avoid drought.  We need a national water plan that sees to all sides of it.

 

Forestation – We need to have a dense tree population.   Reforest all national parks and with a yearly tree planting target in rural and urban areas as well.

 

Funds – A Government builds its assets through its revenue which are taxes, income from national resources, debts, private capital etc.  Most big projects are built by securing loans from banks.  Thereafter principal and interest both has to be paid from govt. revenue.

 

Why not build on Equity.  Let us create Infrastructure Funds, where in equity is raised for each specific project (Close-ended fund).  The dividend will be paid through taxes with no need to payback the principal amount.  Each city, each State, each dept. can have its own Infrastructure fund.  People can invest into these funds and become real owners of their country and get annual dividends. They can sell on the exchange to get back their principal amount at market value.  Tax payer’s money will be used to pay dividends and not to directly finance projects.  It’s what big companies do when they list in stock markets. Many govt. owned companies are already in the stock market.  This will open a new gateway for the govt. to secure cheap and abundant funds to build much needed infrastructure for the whole country.  Of course this has to be made corruption free.  Technical details have to be worked out.

Ownership through share holding and mandatory income tax for all earning citizens.  Every adult citizen should be a shareholder of the country’s infrastructure and every earning citizen should pay income tax however little it might be.  The poorest of the poor should also pay a yearly income tax of a token amount say Rs. 100.  This is intended to create ownership feeling and to take care of national property.

 

NRI tax – Currently non-resident Indians do not pay any income tax to the Indian Government (i.e they are paying in their country of residence and are exempted by double taxation law).  Some income tax should be paid by NRIs to make them contribute to the progress of their nation.

 

CITIZEN’S REGISTRATION SYSTEM

Nations are built on people and the land mass.  In our country we lack a proper registration system of its citizens.  Births and deaths go unregistered.

I propose a Mandatory Registration system with the Tahsil office where each birth is registered by giving a citizen no., parents have to go the Tehsil office and register the the child, Tehsil issues birth certificate.

Each house must have a House register maintained by the Tehsil where members of that house are registered.  The born child gets registered in their parent’s house.

At age 7 the parents report with the child at Tehsil and upon complete verification the Tehsil issues a citizen’s photo id (smart card) which is valid for 7 years.  This means citizens of the state have to report to the Govt. office to be photographed and verified every 7 years.

The House Register and Citizen Id card becomes an important document for each citizen.  He/she will need it throughout their life to apply for education, jobs, buy/sell property, open bank accounts, etc.  A person can only be registered in one house in the whole country.  During the lifetime one can leave a house register and enter another but he/she will be present only in one house register at one time.

At death each citizen must be issued a death certificate.  It has to be made mandatory by law to report births and deaths within seven days and get respective certificates.

Needless to say to achieve Citizens Registration we require information technology which we take pride of.  The computers at Tehsil will be connected to the state and central network.  With a registration system the state can track its citizens and citizens will have a valid id in their pockets all the time.

This system is prevalent in most developed and developing countries.

POPULATION CONTROL

Human life is possible on this earth because of availability of natural resources which in turn is diminishing due to rising population.  The more we are the lesser natural resources are available for us, while the reverse is true for a well being.  India with a population of over a billion people needs to slow the population growth rate and in fact reduce its population to half or even more of what we are today.

We can slow our population growth rate by encouraging or making it mandatory to have children after a certain age say 27.  Over a period of next 200 years we need to halve our population.  Even at half a billion we will continue to be the 2nd populous nation after China.  We have to encourage one child families.  Be it a boy or girl, just one child.  How do we make the girl child acceptable as the only child.  Indian Parents prefer boys because they are traditionally supposed to take care of their parents in old age and be with them after marriage.  If women take care of their parents after their marriage and in old age, girls will surely be liked as much as boys. In many countries daughters are traditionally responsible to take care of their parents.  Indian women are inferior to none.

Welfare Society –  By creating a welfare society as insurance wherein old age is taken care of by pensions and social welfare.

National Agenda on development – there exists are great disparity in development of people, education, goods and services in the country.  There is disparity in rural and urban areas, and between different states.  While one state has progressed some are lagging far behind.  We need to create a National Agenda to serve as a benchmark for all local, state and federal governments to follow.  Right now we are dependent on governments to chalk out their own development plans.  We elect administrations to rule us without giving goals to achieve.  While sincere administrations strive to do most, some just pass their time, the result unsatisfactory work, and under-development.

In a republican democracy a country is collectively owned by people, the people in turn elect administrators to rule them.  We have expectations, but it is not in black and white.  Administrations which fail to perform cannot be dismissed during their current term for under-performance.  And since there is no benchmark to follow newly elected administrations continue the downtrend. The people need to set the goals for their administrators.  Mechanism and systems have to be put in place to set these goals.  Elected administrators must remember there is a job to be done, i.e. we are not sending them to public office just because somebody has to be there but to do a job, targets must be achieved, not just continue in office under-performing and making peoples life miserable.

So here is my two cents, there are many more but for the time being this will do.  I hope it will of some good for the progress of our nation.

Contributed for Public good by

Om Prakash TiwarI –  http://indothaitrade.com/2013/12/open-letter-shri-narendra-modi/

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