Big Ideas for India Contest: Winners – 4
Prakash, in response to multiple questions:
1. India should have a high land tax. A high land tax will automatically incentivise the best usage of land. A tax slab, beginning at land value of Rs 15 lakhs onwards, maybe. That should protect most subsistence farmers.It will either improve the government revenue, or bring land value down. The first improves welfare by reducing the inflation tax, the second improves welfare by reducing the barriers to entreprenurial activity.
2. Announce an employment prize. Announce a really large prize for employing people. Calculate the mathematical product of all salaries paid out to people within a particular period. Give the prize to the entrprise that has the highest score . It will ensure that those desirous of the prize will have to employ a lot of people to win the prize.
Remove land ceilings and tax land instead after taking out a slab for protecting the small farmer. use the proceeds of this tax to scrap all octroi and entrance taxes. India is to be treated as one agriculture market.
1. Charge market rates, for electricity and fuel. Crackdown on theft of electricity.
2. Boost infrastructure investment into electric rail, intercity and intracity (metros and trams). The less we depend on diesel, the better for us.
For tertiary education, scrap the idea of provision of education and concentrate on certification.Have free entry of private institutions.
Winner 8: Pratik Mhatre, in response to multiple questions:
Focus on urban centers and focus less on far-flung regions in terms of infrastructure development (even providing reliable high-speed Internet access can open up numerous business opportunities). Instead divert those resources on making our metropolitan regions more productive and efficient. Foster an entrepreneurial climate by creating knowledge corridors around institutions of higher learning. Do not fight the natural trend of clustering by trying to spread economic growth around. Some regions will always be more productive than the others. We can instead focus on making them stronger by playing to its strengths.
If there is anything we can learn from the urban development of Silicon Valley or Research Triangle in the U.S., it is the underlying importance of the feedback loops of higher education institutions and the talent they attract. The trick in making the graduates stick around by offering them a climate of entrepreneurship through social & professional networking and heavy investment in infrastructure that focuses on quality of life. Urban areas with great weather already have an upper hand and India seems to be blessed with such regions.
Winner 9: Jeevak Kasarkod, in response to multiple questions:
Population and Poverty Alleviation: Through legislation certain deterrents to a booming population needs to be employed. The suggestion I provide will be highly unpopular but it needs to be kept out of partisan debate to be effective and adopted. I recommend heavy taxation on having more than one child and some policy similar to a cap and trade scheme. If you keep the human/emotional aspect out, I see the population growth problem to be similar to the green house gas emission problem. Both are exponential growth curves that fast outstrips a potentially linear resource growth in the very near future. If that truly is the case then GHG cap and trade schemes can be applied to human population curtailment. One possible scenario is, if a higher income level family intends to have more than one kid they will have to pay a hefty sum to an entitlement scheme where you have volunteer lower income families that have decided not to have babies. This way you deal with the population problem and some scale of redistribution of assets.
National Security through non-intrusive foreign policy: No military intervention in foreign countries where India has no personal interest. India can contribute with foreign aid or volunteer programs but no military intervention even if it is the morally right thing to do. We need to first fix our internal issues before we spend abroad.