When the government says its going to make you work for free, how will you eat for free
When the Delhi government announced a ‘zero-hour’ scheme in December, it was seen as a major step towards providing citizens with the cash to support their lives, but many Indians are still finding it difficult to make ends meet.
According to data from the Indian Statistical Institute (ISI), India’s average household income is Rs 1.3 lakh, which is slightly lower than the $1.5 lakh that it was in 2011, but the gap between the two is widening as the number of people in India’s rural areas has grown by more than 25% over the last decade.
India’s economy is already growing at a slower pace than its industrialised neighbour, and the country’s population is expected to rise by almost 6 million by 2030, according to the World Bank.
However, the government’s plan to help rural households by offering them a free meal to help with basic food needs is not without its detractors.
While the scheme is not the first attempt by the government to help India’s most impoverished citizens, it is certainly the most ambitious.
Under the scheme, residents of rural areas will be given a fixed amount of money to cover the cost of their basic meals, including food, water, electricity, fuel and rent.
The money is also meant to help people buy basic goods like household appliances, clothes, books, and other household essentials.
The government also announced a pilot programme in the country last year that was meant to give some help to households who could not afford the cash price for their basic food, such as cooking gas, and also provide a subsidy of 50 paise ($1.30) per kilogram of rice or 20 paise per kg of pulses.
However the scheme did not deliver the promised results.
According to a report by the United Nations Development Programme, the number who received help from the scheme was smaller than the number receiving aid from the government.
The government claims the amount of help it gives to the poor is roughly equal to the amount it receives from private sources.