Jharkhand Pilot for DBT of Food Subsidy a Dismal Failure

In October 2017, the Jharkhand Government introduced a Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) pilot for the Public Distribution System (PDS) in Nagri– a block on the outskirts of Ranchi. Instead of rice at Re 1 per kg at the ration shop, the PDS cardholdersare to receive thesubsidy (calculated atRs 31.60 per kg) in their bank account, and they buy rice at the ration shop at Rs 32.60 per kg. If this pilot succeeds, the Jharkhand government plans to extend it across the state.

A recent survey in Nagri, however, found that that 97 per cent of the sample households opposed the DBT pilot. Their unhappiness – indeed anger – with the DBT system is not hard to understand. In January 2018, about 25 per cent of cardholders did not receive the cash. Even those who get money face many hurdles. Many households do not know which of their bank accounts is being credited with DBT money (the sample households had 3.5 bank accounts on average).

Cs Thapa

When Govt Fails Soldier, Family Stands In Defence

It was the action of a parent not the government or the Ministry of Defence that led to the stay by the Supreme Court of India in the case of Major Aditya Kumar of 10 Garhwal Rifles.  A serving officer Lt Col Karamveer Singh had done more than his duty by sending his son to the forces. Yet as a father he had to move the court to get justice for his son. What action has the nation taken to protect its soldiers except put them in harm’s way and shrug one shoulders and call it “occupational hazards”?  Is this the failure of the establishment that our children for doing their duty have to be legally protected by their kith and kin?

The drastic attack by cowards on the families of soldiers at Sunjwan military station in Jammu is condemnable and just shows the pusillanimous nature of Pakistan Army, another attack is underway at Srinagar. This is not the first time that such a thing has happened; the Army’s systems are resilient. We pray for the departed souls wish the survivors’ speedy recovery but also feel that those who live through such traumatic incidents are well looked after.

Sidharth Mishra

Modi Sets Agenda For Battle Of 2019

Prime Minister NarendraModi in his address in Parliament on the motion of thanks to the President's address last week was at his visceral best. He made most of the opportunity which came his way to lash out at the Congress party. This is not the first time that Modi has chosen to hit out at the Congress but there was certain amount difference in the genre of attack.

Modi on the earlier occasions took on the the nation's oldest political party as the spearhead of the Opposition. This time around he was attacking the Congress, which in the role of the Opposition now was out making mincemeat of claims of development of the NDA-II government.Congress plan for past six-months beginning with the run-up to the Gujarat assembly elections has been plain and simple. They have chosen the grammar and style-sheet of the BharatiyaJanata Party itself, which has been proving to be disconcerting for both the Prime Minister and also BJP president Amit Shah.


Budget 2018-19: Balanced but Not a Boon for Real Estate

All eyes were on the Finance Minister as he delivered his fifth full Union Budget – the last one before the general elections in 2019. As expected, the budget turned out to be populist and sounded excessively cautious while the need of the hour was to provide a positive boost to the economy, which is reeling under the pressure of structural changes and policy reforms.

 The Budget did not offer any substantial incentives to individual taxpayers, with slabs remaining constant. A change in the standard tax deduction in lieu of transport and medical expenses, which now stands at INR 40,000, was the only gift to the salaried class. There was no change in tax savings on home loans, nor were the 80C limits raised. While this put paid to any hopes for significantly increased home buying appetite, there were some notable announcements with positive implications for the real estate sector:


Create Conditions For Army To Operate In J&K

The Chief Minister of J&K in a television interview recently praised the Army as an institution post the Shopian incident. She also said that the Army has some “black sheep” and the matter needs investigation. So Madam CM you have already judged the incident and labeled the persons concerned as ‘black sheep” and decided that they are guilty before the inquiry?
What may one ask gives you this first hand insight without a proper inquiry? Is it a biased mindset or will the inquiry be fair now that the CM has pronounced her verdict?  The CM also stated that the defence minister had been contacted and then she gave the impression that the inquiry has been ordered with the defence ministry’s concurrence. The defence ministry till date has not given a clarification but May I bring to the attention of all what another civilian military leader had to say to his soldiers.