Reality Check India

Online deprivation index calculator

Posted in Uncategorized by realitycheck on June 24, 2009

Okay, there is no such online calculator. But soon we will be seeing something along these lines.

Here is announcing the Equal Opportuninty Commission of India,

“The Bill (to set up EOC) is a commitment of the government. It’s a high priority Bill for us and a landmark Bill for the country and we have to move forward,” Khursheed said maintaining that EOC’s establishment will not just be a boon for the minorities but for all sections of society.     
..

Khursheed said the proposed EOC will conduct its operations in a “comprehensive and collective manner”, to do away the exercise of dealing with key issues in a segregated manner at other levels. EOC suggests identifying the deprived groups against deprivation index cutting across caste and religious lines, he said.     

“After setting up EOC, the majority and the minority will be on the same track, not being looked as separate entities but being looked as together. They can have a common future,” he said.

Source : Business-Standard

In summary, this bill will provide the politicians with the ultimate power. To pamper or prosecute an individual based on whim. Until now, the quota-without-data system only prosecuted or pampered groups. 

Of course, young Indians will be faced with the familiar conundrum. How can we possibly oppose something with a noble name like “Equal Opportunity Commission” ?  We will be branded in no time as “social terrorists”.  Again the devil is in the data or lack of it.

It appears everyone in this socialist paradise will be allocated a “deprivation index” even before they get a  “citizen ID number”. This index we are told will be sensitive to caste, religion, sex, language, disability, food preference. Without batting an eyelid, the minister tells us that such an index will cut across caste and religion.  Well, even a SSC child can tell you that, if variable X is used to calculate an index, then the index is not independent of variable X.  These variables are simply weights attached to various groups you may belong to.  In fact, the weight proposed for religion is 45% – 55%, for caste 25% – 35%, and gender 15% – 25%. (Refer to the Kundu committee report here).  How does it look now ?

Can this system be made to work if we had the data ?

Maybe, but what is the experience we have with data so far. Can anyone even tell us how the beneficiaries of the quota system have progressed ? The government surely does not propose to collect this because this is a political game changer. We cannot sidestep group data, which is the primary social justice platform, and jump directly to an individual deprivation index. How can you assign weights to a caste or religion without this ?

So, how does the Congress government pull this off ? How to appear reasonable when common Indians are given a number like “72% deprived” ?  What is the platform for addressing day to day anomalies. Can a 80% deprived person be taken to court by a 20% deprived person ?

In true socialist style, they will simply take it indoors. A bunch of retired officials will come up with a number of each religion and caste, leaving the question of data to the court. We all know what will happen after that based on recent precedent.

Of course the lawyers support it, this is a legal goldmine.

Please do not blindly sign any online petitions in support of it. First, ask the above questions and be convinced of the answers. We may be social terrorists but we think this is nothing but a blatant intrusion by the government into our private lives.  If we go down this route, the next elections will see political parties promising a 5% raise in our deprivation index in addition to quota.

We have had enough of this !

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3 Responses

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  1. Barbarindian said, on June 24, 2009 at 5:00 am

    In fact, the weight proposed for religion is 45% – 55%, for caste 25% – 35%, and gender 15% – 25%.

    If that is the case, a poor Hindu Dalit will get a lower deprivation index compared to a rich Muslim.

  2. B Shantanu said, on June 24, 2009 at 6:08 am

    Great post RC…Thanks for alerting us to this.

  3. anon said, on June 24, 2009 at 6:53 am

    This whole thing is so tragic.Is there no end to what these social justice people can come up with?


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