Letters to Editor – Growth for whom?

Dear Editorji,

One of the issues being debated in the news media these days is whether GDP grew faster when the Congress Party was in charge or when the BJP has been in charge. I believe this is a completely diversionary debate. Workers and peasants do not benefit from capitalist growth, no matter whether it is in single digits or in double digits.

Those who work hard to produce India’s wealth remain poor and many of them become poorer and more miserable year after year. Capitalist growth brings prosperity and steady expansion of wealth only for a miniscule minority of the population, headed by the Tatas, Birlas, Ambanis and other monopoly houses.

In the statement issued by the Central Committee of Communist Ghadar Party on 12th August, titled “Workers and peasants must organise to become the rulers of India!”, it has been pointed out that

“As long as the principal means of social production remain the private property of a greedy capitalist minority, economic growth is not going to fulfill the needs of the toiling majority of people. Capitalist growth cannot provide jobs for all. Capitalism cannot assure a living wage for workers. It cannot provide secure livelihood for peasants. Capitalism at its present stage can only bring repeated crises leading to widespread death and destruction of the productive forces.”

The debate between the Congress Party and BJP spokespersons about GDP growth is not only diversionary but also faulty in terms of economic theory. The rate of capitalist growth in our country is not determined solely or even mainly by the party in charge of executive power. It is determined by numerous factors including the condition of the world economy and the state of Indian investment and consumption demand.

As far as the workers, peasants and other hardworking people of our country are concerned, the issue is not to maximize GDP growth. The issue is to reorient the economy to fulfill human needs instead of fulfilling capitalist greed. The issue is not to maximize the rate of capitalist growth. The issue is to lay the foundation for a socialist economy whose growth will lead to steady and guaranteed prosperity and protection for all.

S. Udayan, Gurugram, Haryana

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