A Welfare Society

A Welfare Society
  • 1
    Share

Viewed from an economic perspective, our society is in the shape of a pyramid. The top(but tiny) portion of the pyramid is held by a very narrow and wealthy elite; below this triangle are the somewhat relatively wealthy middle classes and below this , the portion is occupied by the poorer classes of society. There is neither a trickledown effect wherein wealth trickles down to the poorer sections nor there is any philanthropy by the wealthier elite to ease and mitigate the economic issues of the poorer sections. The poor then dawdle along with neither support nor any welfare offerings by the elite and the relatively well off. This is alarming and should pose a question to the collective conscience of society. ( A more robust measure of poverty and inequality in Kashmir could be found by the Gini coefficient). But, regardless, the very absence of poverty and inequality is should be an affront to the sensibilities of our society, both religious and moral. However, this is not and should not be enough. Any unconscionable aspect of our society should not merely jar with our sensibilities but also catalyze action. The question is: how can this crystallize and what form should this action take? One obvious measure that stares us in the face is pooling of financial and economic resources by society and then employing these for the welfare of the needy and the vulnerable. It is a statement of the obvious to assert that bad times and vulnerabilities come unannounced. While the wealthy and the relatively well off can deal with the vagaries and uncertainties of life, given their resources, for the poor, the problem(s) get compounded manifold. It then is incumbent upon broader society to rise to the occasion and help. A pool of savings can be kept in a non interest bearing account and this account maintained by the outstandingly scrupulous members of society in a transparent manner. Then , a mechanism can be devised wherein a certain set of eligibility criteria can be instituted and the deserving poor helped. This would not only constitute society’s natural responsibility but also correspond to the commandments of our religion and commensurate duties thereof. The issue and question is of will. There are innumerable vulnerable people out there who need society’s care and assistance. Let us rise to the occasion and come to their assistance. Today, it is them; tomorrow, (God Forbid), it could be you!