Demonetisation despotic action, undermines trust: Amartya Sen

Noting that capitalism has many successes that have come from having trust in businesses, he said if a government promises in promissory note and breaks such promise, then it is a despotic act.

By: PTI | New Delhi | Published:November 30, 2016 4:09 pm
Amartya sen, Demonetisation,Amartya sen demonetisation, Amartya sen on demonetisation, Nobel laureate Amartya Sen, indian government, demonetisation move, demonetisation poor, demonetisation banks, currency demonetisation, india news, indian express news Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen has called Modi government’s demonetisation move “despotic action that has struck at the root of economy based on trust”.

Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen has called Modi government’s demonetisation move “despotic action that has struck at the root of economy based on trust”. “It (demonetisation) undermines notes, it undermines bank accounts, it undermines the entire economy of trust. That is the sense in which it is despotic,” Sen told NDTV. He further said his immediate point of view on demonetisation is on its economic aspect.

“It’s (demonetisation) a disaster on economy of trust. In the last 20 years, the country has been growing very fast. But it is all based on acceptance of each other’s word. By taking despotic action and saying we had promised but won’t fulfil our promise, you hit at the root of this,” Sen, also a Bharat Ratna awardee, said.

Noting that capitalism has many successes that have come from having trust in businesses, he said if a government promises in promissory note and breaks such promise, then it is a despotic act.

“I am not a great admirer of capitalism. On the other hand, capitalism has many successes… It’s despotic in the sense that if a government promises in promissory note that when given, we will give you this amount of compensation for it and to break such a promise is a despotic action,” Sen, who is currently Thomas W Lamont University Professor at Harvard University, said.

The demonetisation issue has also rocked Parliament as both Houses have been witnessing disruptions and adjournments due to noisy protests by Opposition parties for the past several days.

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    Onkar Singh
    Nov 30, 2016 at 11:29 am
    Dr.Sen is talking sense,but Modi and his Bhakts can't digest this fact that Modi is corrupt,the tens of thousands of crores spent in his election campaign-- where did that money come from? Money laundering is a economic offence and there's a case against Adani,but has Modi punished him?No.Why?Rs.1.14 lakh crores of bank NPAs were written off in the budget,( money owed by industrialists to banks),why?That black money should have been attacked!! But he did not.So Midi is first a dishonest person who sups with the corrupt and protects the corrupt,because he is himself corrupt who took bribes from two business houses,its now known to everyone.There is nothing to cheer about demonetization.But we need to examine the legalities of the decision! Because it has put millions to inconvenience!!!!!
    Reply
    1. O
      Onkar Singh
      Nov 30, 2016 at 5:47 pm
      Demonetization is not the step to attack black money.You have to attack the source of corruption.Business and politicians Nexus has to attacked first.
      Reply
      1. O
        Onkar Singh
        Nov 30, 2016 at 5:44 pm
        You don't Dr.Sen to provide solutions.I Wii give.Ask Modi to bring political funding under RTI Act.Stop political funding by business.Bring in state funding for elections.Stop criminals from contesting elections to the emblies and Parliament.The root of corruption is political funding.Attack it.Punish the corrupt.What Dr.Sen is saying is beyond your understanding,because you have a hatred towards him,hence even if he talks sense it will go beyond your sense of understanding.
        Reply
        1. V
          Varadarajan Seshamani
          Nov 30, 2016 at 3:30 pm
          Another political theoretician speaks without thought or figures or social understanding
          Reply
          1. A
            Ajay G
            Nov 30, 2016 at 1:02 pm
            Everything else is fine. When one is unable to withdraw his/her own taxed money that is undemocratic.
            Reply
            1. A
              Amrita
              Nov 30, 2016 at 12:36 pm
              Someone I know was watching NDTV last night and commenting on Modi and demonetization. Everybody knows NDTV stance so no surprises.
              Reply
              1. D
                Dan Mishra
                Nov 30, 2016 at 11:26 am
                Mr Sen has entered the senility phase of his life. Once upon a time his brain was very fertile. Now it has turned into mush. He forgets the simple fact that democracy survives well if people have some basic values and some degree of discipline. Inidia unfortunately has for the past 2-3 generations has lost its value system and self discipline of its people due to rampant selfishness and a the so called secularist governance which has almost destro our work culture and value system. Therefore, it was imperative that a strong medicine be administered to restore the health of a sick Nation. One has to survive first in order to fight for principles and duty. That is all Mr Modi has done. What has Mr Sen done for India? He is sitting in his ivory towers in London and Boston, and giving pious lectures about Capitalism and Democracy about which he has very little knowledge. Knowledge comes through struggle and sacrifice, both of which is unknown to him. It is about time, he stops lecturing and instead enter into quiet contemplation or tapasya in order to realize true knowledge.
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                  csr
                  Nov 30, 2016 at 3:52 pm
                  its a Joke now - 'I Promise to pay Rs 500 / 1000' on Any Legal tender in India, be it any Party Govt. or RBI Governor ? Tomorrow, any other note may Die. Pains we know of Now and Gains (pains!) of Future we would like much (could be lesser)?
                  Reply
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