15th Finance Commission will need to define populism: Chairman NK Singh
The 15th Finance Commission, set up to recommend the devolution of central pool taxes to states as well as a fiscal consolidation roadmap for government finances, will require to define what constitutes a “populist” measure in order to fulfil its terms of reference, Commission Chairman NK Singh said on Wednesday.
At an interaction here with editors along with some members of the Commission, including former Economic Affairs Secretary Shaktikanta Das, the Chairman also pointed out some unique terms of reference of the current Finance Commission arising from the abolition of the Planning Commission and the roll out of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) last year. “The 15th Finance Commission will recommend on creating measurable monitoring criteria on states’ performance on parameters like ease of doing business, on government programmes like Make In India and populist policies,” Singh said.
“For this work, for instance, the Commission has to define what is populism, or what constitutes a populist measure.” Critics point to the increasing use of promises of free power by politicians or distribution of gifts during election time and loan waivers by states as populist measures.
The Economic Times, New Delhi, 01st March 2018