When we study the steps being taken by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, it is not difficult to judge that the overwhelming majority of his steps, even if they appear to be excellent on the surface, are ultimately aimed at benefiting the corporate world. The Bank Deposit scheme is a clear example of this. ….. The net result is that thanks to the government policies, which tax income and expenditure rather than assets, the banks and insurance schemes have in effect become vehicles of the flow of money from less-moneyed to more-moneyed.
Dr Javed Jamil
In my book, the Devil of Economic Fundamentalism, I had given a broad picture of how the forces of economics work:
“The think-tank of the world of economic fundamentalism has taken innumerable steps to strengthen their hold. They have sacrificed the goddess of justice before the eyes of the Statue of Liberty. They have transformed through political manoeuvres the state into their estate. They have incessantly and relentlessly been trying to organise a grand farewell for religion. They have captivated the people’s imagination through the media. They have got the attire of society redesigned so that it looks gorgeous and inviting to their eyes. They have industrialised sex, in which they have discovered the hen that always lays golden eggs. They have relocated the entire educational set-up on the Wall Street. They have monopolised the tree of economy whose fruits and shadows are only theirs; others can only admire its beauty from a safe distance. They have taken science and technology as their mistresses who are always keen to offer their glorious best to them. They have nipped all the challenges in the buds by masterminding popular movements. They have lynched the ‘civilisation’, which has been given a new incarnation; and now Bohemians are called civilised. Last but not the least, they have been busy colonising the good earth in the name of globalisation.
This does not mean however that whatever the economic fundamentalists sought to do or undo was all misplaced. Nor does it mean that the economic fundamentalists are solely responsible for all the wrongs perpetrated on mankind. What is true nevertheless is that they have always striven to support those ideas and movements that would become uranium for their commercial nukes. Sometimes, they would themselves spearhead a particular campaign. More often, they would financially back such activities as suited their strategies. At other times, they would make overt or covert efforts to contain, dilute or minimise the damages to their interests consequent on the popularisation of certain ideas or customs. Many a time they might have pursued or backed a good cause; but they have invariably been selective in their support, calculating its positive or negative impact on their business prospects. It is this preferential and partisan attitude that has to be denounced and renounced, if the world has to be saved from the impending doom.”
When we study the steps being taken by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, it is not difficult to judge that the overwhelming majority of his steps, even if they appear to be excellent on the surface, are ultimately aimed at benefiting the corporate world. The Bank Deposit scheme is a clear example of this.
In the wake of Industrial Revolution, Banks were created to capture the small sums of the people, and to make them available to the big industrialists so that they could expand their businesses. The individual sums may be small but when a whole population deposits them, this would create huge amount. The industrialists and other rich classes would take these as loans and would earn them big dividends. The depositors got a very tiny percentage of what others earned out of their money. The security risks and the charm of getting some “interest” would throng them to the banks. The taxation policy was also designed in a way that it suited the rich who preferred to convert their money into assets, which would act as sureties for loans, and would increase in value by bigger margins than the interests to be paid on loan amounts.
The people would be deprived of whatever they earned as interest on account of the inflation which more or less would negate the expansion. The insurance schemes act the same way based on the principle that the amount paid to the depositors in the form of insurances is much less than the amount earned through their money. The net result is that, thanks to the government policies, which tax income and expenditure rather than assets, the banks and insurance schemes have in effect become vehicles of the flow of money from less-moneyed to more-moneyed. With the privatisation of banks, this effect multiplies itself. The Economic Disparity continues to accentuate with an ever increasing gap between urban and rural people, the rich and poor and the richer and poor communities.
With over 7 crore new accounts opened and already 6000 crores in banks, which will of course keep multiplying, the net beneficiaries will be the ones favoured by the Modi regime: the elites, especially the corporate. Whatever the common people used to keep at homes will now be deposited in banks at the earliest. The corporate of course wants people either to spend their money in buying market items or deposit in the banks. The only reason of satisfaction for the depositors will be that they may be able to save some extra money.
Moreover, the people are being given an option for having an overdraft of Rs 5000. They will go for it considering that either it is a free amount gifted to them or it will be easy to pay it back. With this amount, they are likely to purchase some market products. Markets will again gain, and the poor people will be trapped in the debt.
There is a need to make people aware that as soon as they collect enough money to buy a piece of land, or a small house, they should withdraw their money from banks and do the purchasing. The more the people invest in small assets – they cannot be expected to have big assets – the more it will help the economic equality. They also need to be told that they must use this overdraft only for personal emergencies and not to purchase mobiles and TVs. But with all the media, academicians, experts, politicians playing in the hands of the corporate, who will tell this to them?