Sovereign guarantee of our future

One of the things I have noticed in me and a lot of us is the fear about future. No matter how wealthy you are, the uncertainty about the future remains. It should be less for those having more. But I guess it increases with your wealth as you want all of that from breaking apart.

Assuming we all have a certain lifestyle that we try to meet with our income, suppose by some means, somehow, this lifestyle can be supported magically after retirement, how would all of us feel about it ?

This is not some UBI or insurance type of thing I am talking about. It is about a scenario where all your basic needs can be completely taken care of post retirement. And we won’t believe anyone other than a democratically elected Government here to guarantee this.

How will this look like ? I will give a more concrete example.

Let us say, Mr. X is currently earning one lakh rupees per month. To support his basic lifestyle, he needs say 50% of this amount, fifty thousand rupees. Mr. X goes to a government portal and uploads proof of income, whatever he thinks will be his income until retirement. This can be an yearly update as things can change.

But the point here is, Mr. X tells the government his current income and gets to know the amount post retirement he will get. In this case, let us say he comes to know that he will be getting fifty thousand rupees per month.

Just imagine what would it feel like if you are Mr. X.

If I were X, I will suddenly find I can spend on things that I resisted before.

I am free to go on that holiday or buy that apartment or others without the fear of losing my sleep about funding my future through insurance or pension schemes or trying to multiply it in the market taking big risks. I will go ahead and spend that money as now I can fund them without the need to reserve them for an unknown future.

This can kickstart the economic cycle of spending, manufacturing, jobs, income on a much higher orbit.

Not only that, when people know that Government will guarantee their future based on their income, they will be willing to disclose their income and pay taxes. This can increase the tax collection which can in turn support the payment towards those who are retiring.

Most important is the quality of living. With more to spend and the insecurity about future removed, the confidence in doing things for a large number of middle class will go up several notches, making them experience a better quality of life, devoid of fear and the drudgery of doing menial jobs. The fearlessness can unleash a large number of people exploring things which wouldn’t have been possible, creating new pockets of economic activity.

Also, this will not leave any senior citizen of this country in a state of distress or depend on charity. They can enjoy a honorable living.

The details of this have to be worked out by economists and knowledgeable finance folks. But I am sure some of the European nations guarantee a decent post retirement living for their citizens.

I also feel this can have the effect of pushing the political space of this country towards a more transparent, less corrupt scenario as the need to hoard money is taken off.

In a way this may not only guarantee the future of the people of this country, but also secure a way for the future of the economy as the spending will happen at greater speed which will have to be matched by supply and it will only be good for using the enormous human resources we are blessed with.

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Thalapathy Krishnamurthy

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