Social Media is aghast with various comments about Union budget and its benefits and drawbacks. Many BJP supporters are slamming the “Anti-middle-class Budget”. Congress and Communists will anyway rubbish it. People keep harping about the “Salaried Class” getting nothing, while the poor and the Corporates benefiting. I am middle class, I am salaried class and I see no wrong in what the budget wants to do. I am not an Economist but when everyone is acting like one, I believe I too can express what I believe.
We are the “most selfish and most stupid” middle class in the world. We bargain with the old lady selling corn to save Rs 5 to Rs 10 and pay Rs 275 for a packet of popcorn in the cinema hall without complaining. Often, they won’t return that Rs 5 change and we ignore that. We harass our vegetable vendor and take free toppings of chillies or coriander leaves and then pay through our noses for the toppings on our Pizza in the upmarket restaurant.
We want world class facilities but we need them for free. We look at poverty and blame the governments. Then we refuse to pay the deserved daily wages to our domestic help. We don’t bother about the prices of the liquor but the medicine prices make us protest and blame the Doctors. An entire essay can be dedicated to the selfishness of our salaried middle-class but let us leave it there.
An economy is bound to stagnate when the middle class is selfish. Years of Mai-Baap governance has turned us into the most unproductive middle class in the world. Let us take a look at the Corporates now. There is a grouse that the Corporates have benefited by reduction in tax. Are they a pampered class in reality? If that is true, why have several industries and businesses suffered heavy losses over the years? A simple truth is Corporates create jobs. Even small scale industries and businesses create jobs while salaried middle class just offers labour. If Corporates and businesses don’t flourish, jobs will be lost.
A Corporate or business house creates infrastructure, provides jobs, manufactures goods, pays different level of taxes and sustains economy. Salaried class does none of these. The taxes they pay come after deductions and allowances. Most of the salaried class takes absolutely no risk. They don’t have to take huge loans and repay them. They don’t have to pay salaries to employees. They don’t have to mortgage properties to run an industry. They don’t have to worry about their properties being attached by banks in case of default. In short, the salaried middle class has the lowest risk in the building of a society and a nation.
(This is the first part of the article and the remaining portion will continue tomorrow)
(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)