Sunday, May 6, 2012

Presidential Elections in India & Profligate Indian State Governments

Presidential Elections in India & Profligate Indian State Governments  
Want Bailouts like Western and Chinese Banks  
Looking at the speculations for the next president of India, some of the allies of the Congress party are taking yo-yo positions .How ever when Sonia Gandhi, even if the Congress is now much weakened, decides on someone, and perhaps she has on MH Ansari, the allies and supporters will fall in line .Finance minister Pranab Mukherjee can replace an 'ill' PM MMSingh after the elections in July. He can come back to Rajya Sabha after 2014 as he does not want to fight an election, second time round for Lok Sabha. He is invaluable but as an ally and will lose his power like a hair shorn Samson, if he --.The political groups promoting his candidature are fishing in troubled waters for concessions.
BJP's declining stature and Shushma Swaraj's anti-Muslim and crude statement has about MH Ansari made its allies uncomfortable and queasy .Alliance with JDU in Bihar is opportunistic and Sharad Yadav has shown his hand against BJP stand on MHAnsari.
As for Mamta Banerjee, at present, she is more concerned with the financial crisis in West Bengal and is carefully watching the Centre's response to her demand for a three-year moratorium on the interest payable by her state. She is staying in the capital till the NCTC meet on Saturday and a lot depends on how she reacts to the central aid offered for Bengal.
Mamta's electoral strength and clout will depend on the central concessions she can extort. So Mamta is playing her own little game during her stay in the capital. Apart from meeting the Congress chief, she spent some time with Mulayam Singh Yadav. Just kite flying, veiled threats or consensus building. Would the heterogeneous party groups agree on Pranab if Congress is not willing?
Unlike Banerjee, Mulayam was almost on board. But when consensus on MH Ansari seemed possible, his bargaining strength declined .He told reporters on Thursday that the president should be a "political" person, which many have interpreted as his preference for Mukherjee. Can Mulayam survive in UP after saying no to MHAnsari, also from an old UP politically powerful Congress family. Ashraffs monopolise power on behalf of Muslims in all parties all over India .And Akhilesh, Mulayam's son's inherited Jagir UP is also in deep financial trouble .Without centre's financial support Akhilesh will have economic problems and resulting disaffection of the electorate soon.
In any case CBI can be used to prod and align Mayawati, Mulayam .A much diminished Lalu has been singing Sonia's praises since his fatal parting away from the Congress .From Antony in Chennai .Karunanidhi must have got a sympathetic hearing on how CBI treats his daughter Kanimojhi and his need for protection from Idli Amma Jaya .
I have written enough on bailout of Banksters and Financiers in USA and Europe, whose Keynesian policies have destroyed their economies.
Over decades I used to wonder how the West lived in luxury working 36 hour weeks with paid holidays and other perks .Mostly it is based on looted wealth from centuries of colonial exploitation by the power of the gun, which still so far rules the world as in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya .US spends as much on 'defending' itself as the rest of the world put together and then add defense expenditures by NATO countries.
But as Hyman Minsky rightly predicted that the neoliberal Capitalist model, which speaks of a equilibrium is false as tipping over the edge is built into the model .Oligopolies in the West have transferred the wealth of Asia, Africa and Latin America and their own middle and poorer classes to their accounts .Western corporate interests have already eaten away the pension and social security funds contributed by the latter as a result of living beyond means on false economic models.
Unfortunately accumulation of debts has also become the policy of corrupt ruling classes in India too .The states have been impoverished and the political classes have transferred wealth to themselves and cronies in robber baron classes.
How long this economic charade around the Globe last! US corporates biased S& P downgraded India's investment grading .But what about US and EU barring perhaps Germany .AAA, some joke it is.
But look at the economic situation in a very rich Indian state of Punjab, below.
All these NGOs and Elections Commission must demand when political parties promise freebees to explain to the electorates in their manifestoes how are they going to finance the freebees so the masses know what they are in for. The kleptocracy seems to have outwaited and outwitted an aging Anna Hazare so far.
What a rich Punjab wants from the centre is to compensate for poll freebees like laptops with a data card for students, unemployment allowance, plots for the landless, provident fund for farmers. The Alkali Dal promises in its poll manifesto will now cost the state Rs 10,000 crore. This is in addition to the total expenditure of Rs 50,883 crore. That alone would leave the state with a fiscal deficit of Rs 12,683 crore, most of it created by a revenue deficit of Rs 9,179 crore, the state's highest ever.
Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal sought a bailout from the Centre at the recent inauguration of the Bathinda refinery. Badal urged the Prime Minister for a complete waiver of small savings loans, totaling Rs 22,202 crore, besides a five-year moratorium on repayment of Central loans. He also urged the Prime Minister to constitute an expert committee to help put Punjab on the growth track.
Read below "Why lavish Punjab wants a bailout"
K. Gajendra Singh 6 May, 2012.Mayur Vihar, Delhi