News of the economic crisis in Sri Lanka has sparked a new debate against freebies in the country. The Sri Lankan government had taken steps such as cutting taxes for all and distributing various free goods and services. As a result, the heavy burden on its economy led to the downfall of the economy.
The already heavily indebted country was left with no option but to default. In the context of this development, now a debate has started on the issue of free goods and services being provided by Indian states.
Freebies are becoming an integral part of Indian politics. Whether it is in the form of a promise to woo voters in the elections or in the form of free facilities to remain in power. This is the reason that at the time of elections, such expectations are being expressed by the people, which are fulfilled only by such promises of freebies.
When people from neighbouring or other states of the country are getting gifts or services for free, then their expectations increase comparatively. This is the reason why all the political parties promise free electricity, and water supply, along with laptops, smartphones etc. to woo the voters.
All the states of the country should refrain from making these promises, as it affects the treasury. We know, that the financial condition of most of the states of India is poor. These states often have very limited resources in terms of revenue. If these states continue to spend for alleged political gains, their financial position will falter and there will be a breach of fiscal discipline.
India is a huge country and there still exists a large group of people who are living in poverty. Therefore, there is a need to include all the people of the country in the development plan of the country. The Modi government at the Center has taken many good initiatives towards this.
We know that due to providing free facilities in Venezuela, its economy completely collapsed. Inflation has reached a dire situation. Today they are facing a financial crunch. It is, therefore, necessary to differentiate between subsidies and freebies, as subsidies are justified and specifically targeted benefits that arise from demands.
Although every political party of the country has the right to create a subsidy ecosystem to benefit targeted needy people, it should not be a long-term burden on the state or central government exchequer. It would be better if the central government and state governments should avoid free announcements and promises.