"Despite of so many committees formed over the last many decades, there has never been a correct insight into who are the legitimate beneficiaries of the welfare schemes."Critically examine.

Model Answer:
India is a state, where most of the silent features of the constitution are aimed at the effort to establish a welfare state. The Preamble and the Directive Principles of State Policy make it amply clear our goal is welfare and socialist state through democratic means. The government tries to achieve the goal with the help of different local welfare schemes. But, the actual problem still remains in identifying the legitimate beneficiaries of the schemes. Despite of so many committees formed over the last many decades, there has never been a correct insight into who are the legitimate beneficiaries of the welfare schemes. Further, the official estimates of the poor have always tended to under estimate the number of poor in comparison to the estimates done by international organizations such as World Bank. The reason lies in the fact that the committees focused only on income and consumption expenditure of individuals rather than focusing on household. The poverty-targeting local programme without the actual identification of the legitimate beneficiaries can lead to the exclusion of the poor from these schemes, either due to weak administrative capacity, or poorly administered eligibility criteria of poorly designed social security schemes. The inequality gap between the rich and poor may increase more and more. The solution to problem lies in focusing more on universal schemes rather than local schemes, which will not only have the advantage of a straightforward beneficiary identification process, but can also be introduced as rights that citizens enjoy.

Question for UPSC Mains:
“Despite of so many committees formed over the last many decades, there has never been a correct insight into who are the legitimate beneficiaries of the welfare schemes.” Critically examine.

Published: February 7, 2016 | Modified:June 27, 2019

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