Indians are very tolerant people. They try to go along and support the decision of the government, even if it causes some discomfort to them. When the government itself is confused, how can people be sure if demonetisation was a good or bad step to curb black money? Effects of note ban will be felt during the Uttar Pradesh and Punjab assembly polls. If BJP doesn’t restore normalcy then people may vote against it. Note ban has slowed down economic activities as manufacturing activities have been disrupted. Many labours have become unemployed due to decline in manufacturing activities and they have returned home. They are unable to make both ends meet and struggling to earn their livelihood. Sectors such as handloom, handicrafts, textiles and carpet employ a large number of seasonal and migrant workers who do not have a bank account, and therefore, their wages are paid in cash. In some cases where firms were looking at capacity expansion, there are delays in construction work as contractors are seeking payments in cash in turn pay their workers.
On the other hand, demonetisation has made people cautions about spending their hard earned money. Now people rethink before buying a commodity. They have cut down unnecessary expenditure and are only spending money for meeting their day to day expenses. The demonetisation policy may lead to the economy slowing down particularly in the sectors primarily dealing in cash, but it would be a course correction for larger inclusive growth and greater push to Indian economy in the long-term. A few small-time workers, who are sole income earners of their families, have decided to accept payment in parts whenever their employer gets money. Note ban has hit farmers hard as they have no money to sow their crops. The government must take the Opposition into confidence while initiating such measures that cause largescale disruptions to people’s lives and livelihood systems.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi is a visionary leader but engaging in too much visualisation doesn’t augur well for him. He is making tall promises but nothing is happening on the ground. Industrial production will increase and sustain cost and quality if we have well trained manpower. The government has announced awards for people adopting cashless transaction but it has failed to create enough jobs to address the issue of unemployment. We need expert pilots for civil aviation and Air force. Have you heard any visionary speaking about this topic? No, because it entails dedication and hard work. On the other hand, Modi hit out at opposition parties for criticising demonetisation and other policies rolled out by the government for the welfare of the poor. Agricultural and horticultural production must increase. How many ships we are building or dry docking in India? Indian citizens are intelligent and hard working. Their energies need to be channelised in the right direction and in an efficient manner.
(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)