Planning Vs. Execution, Or Philanthrophy Vs. Practice
Do you feel that the idea of “each hand has one handset” sets an ambitious note for India? Do you feel that the idea generated for the BPL families having at least one handset was good but fell short of the required planning? Read on!
Here is some food for thought supporting or refuting this noble idea-
- A telecommunication via handset is the most imperative thing for penetration among the masses and definitely indicates the development index of a country. But the ambition should be limited to an extent where it can be put into execution. Shelling out 7,000 Crores of rupees for handing mobile farmers a handset of 1,000 INR roughly can be too early a step, especially with the deficit growing.
- The idea is noble, but put into practice; this will require a huge infrastructure boom to support it, and which is not happening at this moment. Even to support migration to the main cities, we need to build roads and shelters. And we need to raise money not just spend them.
- I agree that the fortune lies at the bottom of the pyramid, but to reach to the bottom at the first go is a mistake. The target reach should be two or three layers above, where there is a need for a certain strata of people to make the most of this planning. Then you can trickle down to the lowermost rung and again trace your path to the levels above the starting point. I guess that might refute the whole theory, but putting into practice a theory depends on time and money.
- This is a dream come true after 2025. The mobile penetration rate has reached just beyond 55%, and the lagers have enough per capita income to buy and hand set worth INR 2000 then, considering the time value of money.
- Tap those who are directly connected to the GDP growth of a country. For example farmers, who have sustainable income to recharge mobiles and fill denominations, and not them who depend on the solar lights only to run counter darkness in their homes. Firstly, we have to bring their level of income in order to hand them a basic handset. The farmers who have a sustainable income should be gifted this scheme, and that might mean discrimination now, but the point is to make the gift affordable.
- Co-relate crop yield with bonus. In this method, introduction of high yielding seeds will be beneficiary in these matters. Then, the discounts for the next mobile will be better, or even the discount on seed purchase and information delivery.
- Identification of zilas and tehsils should be made so that this schema could be rolled out as pilot projects with the given parameters, mentioned above. It has to be more of a subjective analysis at the first few roll-outs.
- Developing rural media in vernacular languages and their applications is a must. A Bhojpuri farmer will not be able to comprehend even Hindi if he does not get a dialect of that order. That might mean setting up a rural call centre to cater to the needs of the people, near that zone, and a creation of more rural jobs. This is a hidden diamond.
- I always believe that haste makes waste, slow and steady wins the race. Slow conversions done parallel, right form uplifting the plight of farmers from a deplorable condition to a sustainable income to gifting them a handset should be a two way course work.
- Lastly, execution. Even if the best of efforts are laid to task, it may turn sour if not properly executed. The main motto is to link the handset with GPRS to locate people, help in healthcare emergency, access to information, and rural schemes and avoid instances that generally led to unsymmetrical information. The better informed they are, the better are the chances for a brighter India.
Hence, I can say that lending mobiles to farmers has to have a proper plan and timing, even if it is the best of the noble causes.