Populist economics

By Nagaland Post | Publish Date: 3/20/2019 12:52:17 PM IST

 One subject that will not lose importance but rather whose importance will continue to rise is – the economic condition of Nagaland. Economic environment is not static – it is either good or bad and either of which, decide on whether the state is progressing or regressing. Government policies have been prepared through the planning panel or vision documents and all with the purpose of bringing benefits for the people through various programmes. However much of the policies come from a desire to attempt at documenting populist rhetoric than on preparing sagacious economics. Several politicians have their perspective of what the ‘economic vision’ should be, based on the social, economic and political factors. Socio-political ideologies have been accommodated even encouraged in Nagaland but the essence of an inclusive growth took a beating since the mid-90s. Government planners bringing out socio-economic calendars unfailingly, inject a dose of populism. Such economic concepts can only be understood and appreciated by those who are used to armchair knowledge and with less economic or social sense. Among the pressing problems for a small state like Nagaland, which boasts of a high literacy ratio and rapid “growth in education” are the rise in unemployment since many of the youth, who are supposedly educated, are unemployable. The unemployment problem is compounded by dwindling opportunities in all spheres. The short term objectives that include government sponsorship for ‘selected’ or chosen beneficiaries has only proved to be another among many such symptomatic treatments. Unfortunately, such ‘favoured’ schemes which are cornered by the chosen few, are done on the basis of patronage and not merit. With whatever has been achieved, today the young people are aware of their potential and need opportunities and space. This can only happen if there is transparency in selection. Those enlightened and influential organisations, particularly the church, have to take a stand on how to tackle growing inequality being perpetrated through gross unfair and questionable means. The enlightened, the vocal hohos and organisations including the sermonising religious leaders, must share responsibility of creating a conducive atmosphere for planting the seeds of long term economic development in Nagaland without which no progress can be achieved. Politics cannot overlap into economics nor can it be allowed to be the decider. Rather politics should respect economics and make every effort to ensure that policies are guided by good sound economics. Why such a proven concept has not been acceptable is because of the play of money and power politics which ultimately determine the direction taken by the government machinery. Economics at both micro and macro levels are contexts seen in societies that have latched on the current of economic momentum. The plea of promoting economic development should leave no space for promoting and establishing a privileged section. Today, all those marvellous schemes and visions have mainly benefitted a class of the Nouveau riche in Nagaland. There can be no balanced development if a few have all and all have none. The crisis provides a challenge for the constitutional institution that claim to be doing it “for the people” but end up doing only for “their people”. It may also be reminded that during the past few decades, the government has been reduced to the role of a fund dispensing agency whose authority exists on paper only.

Launched on December 3,1990. Nagaland Post is the first and highest circulated newspaper of Nagaland state. Nagaland Post is also the first newspaper in Nagaland to be published in multi-colour.

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