Friday, February 19, 2021

What Could Be the Reasons for Unprecedented Petroleum Product Price Rise in BJP Ruled India?

India is the largest populated nation in the world that is a constitutional democracy and its democratic system of governance have been in operation for the past over 7 decades. It is a federation of states where the central government and the state governments have powers to enact and administer laws in accordance with the written Constitution.

In the event of any disputes or contradictions in the laws, the Supreme Court of India is empowered to intervene to set things right!

Though democracy might be the best form of government for the best kind of people with reasonably high knowledge and wisdom, it may not be the case for a nation like India where the average Indian has not attained that kind of a stature so far!

In other words, the average Indian is a mediocre individual and for the mediocre people, democracy deteriorates over time to yield governments by mediocre or below mediocre individuals!

A nation with a complex population with varying individual or group understanding, likes and qualities, complexities in administration are quite natural. And when such complexities are dealt by a mediocre group of law makers, administrators, media and judiciary, the complexities of the nation are bound to rise with time. In such a democracy, people keep facing problems of various kinds continuously for several decades. They use their democratic powers to change their mediocre administrators but may not find success because they have only mediocre fellows to be selected as the replacements!

Indian citizens have been witnessing such a phenomena for quite some time. They felt that their government was not doing any thing to control prices of essential commodities such as petrol and diesel and the ministers in government talked and showed arrogance that they could not tolerate any more. That was the case prior to 2014 when the Indian National Congress and its allies in the name of United Progressive Alliance (UPA) were ruling the nation.

The Indians easily got carried away by the other major opposition group called the National Democratic Alliance, NDA, led by the Bharatiya Janatha Party or BJP. People believed what they told. The secular appeasement of minority religions of the nation by UPA was the reason told by BJP for rising prices and lack of opportunities!

So they voted the ruling UPA out of power and installed NDA to do good governance of the nation, in 2014! 

The new group in power on a fine evening declared withdrawal of certain currency notes in circulation, a step that is noted in history as the 'demonetization' step. The motivation for this step was told as for eliminating black money concentrations in the hands of many in the form of unaccounted cash.

This one step caused great problems to millions of people in India. More than the direct problems it affected the lower level economic activities of the nation in an unprecedented manner. It caused unceremonious closure of millions of business activities of the nation which so far had been predominantly working on a currency based system. But no one ever noticed it as none had the ability to view the country as a whole! But it began to show in tax collections by the central and the state governments. But the mediocre administrators preferred to ignore the signs!

Some mediocre bureaucrat who happened to be near to the top administration of the political bosses in governance seemed to have advised the latter for the need of quick implementation of what is now known as the GST system of taxation for improving the falling tax collections! The new system had double advantages, they told the bosses! Most importantly, the new system would make all tax money to go to the central government account and the latter would later allot the states' share. It can be used as a whip to control those states ruled by those not liked by the individuals in the central government! Besides, the new system is fully computerized and that will make any attempt of tax evasion by any business fellow, impossible!

Fantastic! The political masters hastily approved the idea without much thoughts or preparations. The mediocre bureaucrats implemented it too quickly with so many complex rules and procedures to be done by almost all remaining business people of India! The illustrious individuals in the government considered it unimportant to make the business people understand the system and get experienced with it! They simply thought that harsh punishments and fines would make every one fall in line too quickly! So the GST system of commercial taxation was adopted in a fully digital and networked system by executive orders. It had to be operated with faulty or inadequate computer network, server computers and perhaps a hastily made up software system!

The effect have been havocs to millions of small and medium scale business groups while the large businesses with enough resources could overcome those quickly. The bureaucratic and political individuals in governance paid little attention to the tax paying small and medium business groups!

The cascading effect of this was closure of millions of businesses, both manufacturers and traders. Yet none thought it important to look in to it!  The effect was not immediately visible to the public. But it was clearly visible to the government. Their tax collections were falling drastically!

But how can a group of mediocre people in governance admit their wrong decisions? Only high caliber people are broadminded enough to admit follies. Mediocre people are highly egoistic in nature. They can never ever admit their own mistakes! When they are too reluctant to admit mistakes, how can they ever look for rectification of mistakes?

Due to corruption, inefficiency, wrong policies, high ambition to enhance military and policing have been causing Indian governance a high cost affair. Indian governments have not been able to have enough resources to fast forward economic development to satisfactory levels comparable to other nations with good infrastructure, social security, healthcare, literacy, employment opportunities and reasonable per capita income. They have been with ambitious plans without enough monetary resources to implement the plans properly in time. Regretably, those in key administrative positions never made any proper plans for having a balanced budgetary roadmap for governance!

They seemed to ignore the fact that a robust economic stability is essential for the governments too to gain financially. Heavily taxing the burdened economy was the only method they knew!

And that constrained the economic activities of the nation. When people have lesser incomes, they cut spending on goods and services that are not so essential. That in turn causes downward shift in the markets affecting business profitability. In turn tax collections too get affected adversely.

To add to the woes of the Indian economy, the Covid-19 lock downs also came into effect in 2020.

So the Indian government and consequently, the state governments have begun to lose revenue and income by way of tax collections. Instead of quickly adopting rectification of the problem, they preferred to adopt other methods.

And one such other method was enhancing the taxes of essential commodities like petrol, diesel, gas, aviation turbo fuel etc. The high taxation on the other hand are making more and more businesses to become unprofitable and unviable.

So now India is in a vicious circle. It is increasing the taxes for enhancing the governments income without attempting any thing to reduce its several wasteful expenditures. The higher taxes are reducing the profits of businesses and their tax contributions. That's making the government to increase taxes further!

Where are we going?

Who has got the courage to bell the cat?

If you ask me, only the people have the power for that. Indian people have to think while electing their representatives such as members of the parliament or state assemblies. They have to use their precious democratic power to make the individuals in politics and bureaucracy to do the service of proper governance wisely and for the benefit of the nation and its people.

They should learn to reject people without character, competence, compassion and courage who are fielded by political gangs for getting elected as their representatives. They should learn to reject people who are merely slaves of their political bosses who play from behind the curtains!

They should support political parties who have logical manifestos for making overall improvement to the nation rather than those with vague or twisted agendas.

Most importantly, the people should use their common sense to weed out evil political outfits who adopt all kinds of tricks to fool people to capture the power to govern the nation to fulfill their own vested interests rather than the nation and its people!

When that's done, India will have good governance by good people who would be in a position to find out and implement better methods of administration.

Such a government in India, like several other better governed nations, would not be required to tax people to suffocation! Such a government in India would use every rupee collected judiciously for the welfare of its people!

Indians would  then be proud of their democracy and no more would be cursing the demoncracy that they have been subjected to so far!

Monday, February 8, 2021

Why did the three Central Farm Laws of India Enacted in 2020 Become Controversial?

First let us find out what exactly are these three controversial farm laws of India enacted in 2020. 

Essentially, these three laws comprise of the following two new central laws and an existing law amended. 

The two new acts that got passed by the Indian Parliament and became laws are the following:

1. The Farmers' Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act 2020. ( Click Here to Read it in the e-gazette!)

2. Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act 2020. (Click Here to Read Online!)

Concurrently the existing Essential Commodities Act got amended to make the laws consistent with the existing laws by promulgating an Ordinance as below:

Essential Commodities (Amendment) Ordinance 2020. (Click Here to Read it Online!)

I am not going to the details of the clauses of these laws and amendments. 

Essentially what these new laws achieve is de-regulation of essential food items grown by farmers all over the country. So far, farm produces were regulated by various laws and rules. Free movement, storage or trading of farm produces have been under various government controls.

With the above said laws in actual operation across India, the existing practices would become a thing of the past! Both farmers and traders get freed of government regulations! 

In a way it's good for everyone when viewed in an innocent manner.

But things won't go that simple when greedy merchants and business houses get a free hand to operate unregulated. There are all chances that such forces would now get ample opportunities to work out things in their favor and the sufferers would be the original farm producers and the consuming public!

Unscrupulous traders and business people with their money power can create situations in which farmers are forced to sell their produces at throw away prices during harvest season and hoard those produces indefinitely to create shortages and price rise, exploiting the consumers too. In effect a few large business groups with the ability to mobilize large funds would be in a position to make huge profits!

Both the farmers and the consuming public are going to suffer while a few would get opportunities to make extreme profits with no effective regulations in force!

If one examine carefully, it can be found that the existing provisions in the Indian Constitution and the laws had been to safeguard against such an undesirable situation getting developed in the country!

Obviously, these laws can only do good when the business community in India, doing businesses in farm produces, is essentially good and non-greedy. Unfortunately, that's not the case! A few unscrupulously greedy businessmen or corporates can make a small percentage of people getting richer while a larger percentage of people struggling for existence!

That means grave consequences for the common people of India in the time to come when these laws become fully operational. Farmers might not get reasonable prices for their efforts while the consuming public might face rising prices year after year in essential commodities including food items such as grains, cereals, vegetables, fruits, oils etc. And the governments in the country cannot interfere as they used to do so far!

The haste in which the present government of India enacted these laws bypassing some constitutional provisions creates suspicion in the mind of any unbiased citizen capable of understanding these laws and the Indian economy.

Now only some farmers from a few states surrounding New Delhi are protesting in an uncompromising manner as they seem to be the first ones who are directly affected by these laws. They're demanding withdrawal of these laws immediately!

Many citizens like me wonder why the government is rigid on this! There's no sense or logic for any well meaning government to go this far against a long, massive people's agitation of such a magnitude!

Only time will tell what's going to happen in India with the new farm laws of India enforced!

What's perplexing than these laws or the agitations, is the blind support the government of India is getting now from sections of the society on account of political polarizations!

Thursday, December 24, 2020

Wondering How Bloggers Make Money by Blogging? Important Things Bloggers Should Know!

Blogging is one of the first and foremost important method by which pieces of knowledge are created and stored in the various public domain computers networked in the world wide web called the internet.

Information so created by systematically typing, editing articles that are useful for others for knowing something they do not know much, but are interested to know are now called web logs or blogs. Blogs typically contain information in the form of texts, diagrams, images or video clips. These are all contents and blog writers or creators are also called content creators. Now-a-days, more and more people are attracted towards contents created in the form of video clips because videos are more effective in communicating ideas when created properly. Video blogs are now-a-days called Vlogs.

Additionally there are  contents created exclusively for entertainment or leisure. When texts, images, audio, video are all used for content creation, then we may call it multimedia content.

Several companies help content creators with useful software or application platforms by which contents can be created, edited, saved and shared publicly or privately using the internet using various kinds of computer or mobile browsers. They are the social media platforms such as Blogger, WordPress, YouTube, Facebook, etc. Search engine software such as Google, Yahoo, AOL, etc help in finding useful content available as saved in the internet server computers.

Social media companies employ thousands of people for managing the social media platforms and spend huge money while attempting to gain profits too.

Apparently, social media appear as free services for the users, but essentially nothing is free. They are all there for mutual benefits to every one.

The most common model by which social media companies make money is from advertisements of various kinds. In turn they share a part of their ad incomes with content creators such as blog writers and vlog creators.

A Blog Page with Ads placed by Google Adsense

Ads are basically for selling goods and services online. When ads reach more and more people, chances of more and more people procuring goods and services increase and sellers profits start increasing. In turn they spend money for ads. Social media ads in Google, YouTube, Blogger, WordPress, etc are therefore on the rise.

Thus content creators in social media platforms too get opportunity for making money provided their content pages are viewed by more and more people.

Now a days millions of freelance and paid content creators are creating and uploading billions of pieces of information over the internet. Similarly billions of internet pages are visited by internet users day in and day out. However, all contents are not viewed in the same rate. Some are viewed and shared by thousands of people in a short time. Such social media information pieces spread like viral disease and hence called 'viral'. 

In social media, content that is viral is potentially good for gaining some money.

In the pioneering years of the internet, search engines such as Google helped content to reach users who searched for useful content for them using 'key words'

But today, information also gets to many people when they 'share' content that they think as good or important with their friends or groups.

With the above background, it is easy to realize the main points that content creators should keep in mind when they create social media content and expect to make some good money by such an effort.

Let us see those points one by one:

1. The content created must be your own original creation and not copied from other sources. You may use information spread out in different places but it should never be something copied in part or full. Internet search engines usually discard copied information originally available elsewhere.

2. Your content should convey some useful thing by way of information or entertainment to the viewers.

3. It should be created using some popular creation platform in an appealing manner. Images, diagrams and video clips can enhance viewership. Blogger by Google, WordPress, YouTube, Facebook are the commonly used social media platforms. 

4. Your content should be easily downloadable by most computers and mobile sets. If your page uses complex layouts with heavy data, the user may not be able to get your page full in a short time. In other words, your page is not easy to get loaded in a user device. If that happens, users normally exit from it quickly and do not bother to view or read it fully.

5. Your page design must be proper for ads to be placed appealingly.

6. It is important that you share your content both with your friends and with the public when you made it for getting some income from ads.

6. When your content is too useful and when your viewership exceeds more than say 2500 in a day, you may start gaining some ad income. As the viewership goes higher, your chances of getting ad incomes paid by the social media companies also increase.

7. To get income from the social media companies like Google, you may have to register your YouTube channel or Blog site so created with them giving all relevant information asked. Google AdSense is a commonly used ad placement system.

8. It is also possible for you to gain ad income personally by negotiating with advertisers separately. However, for this to be effective, your daily viewership should be to the tune of thousands or more.