Thoughts on economics and liberty

Category: Swarna Bharat Party

What Swarna Bharat Party brings to India. A short message (draft #1)

I've tried to outline what SBP brings to India in a short message. Please provide your thoughts and comments. This is a first draft.


Have you ever experienced a sudden astonishment upon seeing something new? That would be similar to someone who has lived his entire life in a small village and only visited a nearby small town. If an opportunity comes for him to visit Delhi and look at the large shopping malls, Rashtrapati Bhavan and international airport, his astonishment knows no bounds. He can’t imagine how people built these things, and how they produced what is sold in the malls, although he can recognise some elements of his life in the dirty and shabby streets and homes of the slums and villages of Delhi.

Similarly, when a person who has lived his life only in Delhi visits a modern developed country like USA or Australia, his astonishment is complete. He can’t imagine how an entire city can be so clean, its people so well-to-do, and the absence of corruption in getting a drivers licence.

The average Indian has never visualised what it is to be prosperous. So he doesn't understand how poor and backward India is. Our country can be compared with a broken village school while most people in the developed world live in what can be described as an air-conditioned palace, in comparison.

India was once the world’s richest country but never as rich as the West is today. 

The West moved rapidly ahead of India about 250 years ago through a dramatic change in the society's systems and expectations. Everyone became more free, and businessmen were respected. There was freedom to speak, freedom of occupation, and governance that protected property rights.

There was a time, long ago in the time of Chandragupta Maurya when India followed many of these principles, and became a rich nation. But at some point in time, liberty became constrained in India. We became a hierarchical, caste based  society where opportunities were limited only to a few.

Indians who live abroad are very successful and prove that there is nothing wrong with Indians. That is because they are allowed to succeed in the West, while in India they are blocked.

Who blocks us from succeeding? Our government does that. India is one of the world’s worst places to open a business. It takes a very long time to get approvals to start a business. Then you have to pay bribes at every step. Finally, taxes are very high if you manage to succeed. We have created a place where only the corrupt are rewarded.

India is like a butterfly caught in a permanent state of being a pupa. Our government has blocked us from succeeding. 

Swarna Bharat Party is deeply aware of the fundamental cause of India’s misery: its lack of liberty. India ranks among the lowest in the world on social and economic liberty. Even on freedom of the press and freedom of speech we are one of the lowest in the world.

Restrictions on freedom block people from becoming rich (socialism) or block people from saying what they wish (often in the name of religion). The net effect of these restrictions is chilling: it freezes the mind and creates poverty and misery.

The people of India can solve their own problems if they are allowed to act on their own with support from the government only for the poorest of the poor. Indians can create the world’s best schools, best hospitals, best businesses, best jobs if left to themselves.

The West has continued to progress; its citizens have become better fed, better clothed, better housed and better transported; class and social distinctions have narrowed; minority groups have become less disadvantaged; popular culture has advanced by leaps and bounds.  All this has been the product of the initiative and drive of individuals co-operating through the free market. Government measures have hampered not helped this development. The invisible hand has been more potent for progress than the visible hand of government.

We know this works. We have direct evidence in the case of telecom in which the moment the government lifted its dead hand from the industry, everyone could aspire to get a phone or a mobile phone. When private airlines were allowed entry, prices dropped and businesses could quickly travel across India. Imagine if Infosys had been in government hands. We know it would have been making losses now, instead of being a money and job spinner for India.

And we know that all politicians (starting from Rahul Gandhi) go to the best private schools, IAS officers send their children abroad. But for the rest of India, they force everyone to study in third rate government schools. They block private schools and choke private enterprise at each step.

Swarna Bharat Party is the only party in India totally committed to freedom (with accountability), with special emphasis on opportunities to the poorest of the poor. Swarna Bharat Party is also committed to the idea of world-best economic innovative policies that meet the cost-benefit test.

We are offering India the world-best Sone Ki Chidiya Total Reform Agenda. We are committed to openness, transparency, and recognition of talent within the party. We aspire to the highest levels of internal governance.

Join Swarna Bharat Party. You will never regret this decision. It costs only Rs.100 to get life membership.


DRAFT visual depiction (click for larger image, and for Word version here)

SBP culture:

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Now is your opportunity to ACTUALLY FIX India’s problems. Swarna Bharat Party.

Although its process of registration is still underway, it is now only a matter of weeks before SBP gets registered as India's first classical liberal party.

A notice inviting objections was issued nearly a month ago:

In English

1. The Hindu – 20 & 22 Sep 2013
2. Rastrawadi Times – 20 & 22 Sep 2013

In Hindi

1. Rashtriya Sahara – 20 & 22 Sep 2013
2. Chandra Jyoti Lokvani Times – 20 & 22 Sep 2013.

Within days, if no objection has been received SBP should have completed all formalities for registration.

SBP is India's first classical liberal party. Its predecessors in India (broadly classical liberal) include Rajaji's Swatantra Party and Sharad Joshi's Swatantra Bharat Party. SBP's sister parties (with broadly classical liberal focus) are Lok Satta and Jago Party.

SBP is intended to be an AGGREGATOR party – to bring together a vast number of good people who believe in liberty and good governance. It will also constantly accept new leaders and reshuffle its leadership team to accommodate other parties that may wish to (at some stage) merge into this NATIONAL LIBERAL PARTY.

This is now your opportunity to FIX INDIA'S PROBLEMS.

Your platform is now almost ready.

Please express interest in contesting the 2014 elections as SBP candidates. Details here.

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Swarna Bharat Party created today. What is its purpose?

As you are aware, some of us have been mulling over the creation of a party that would take the Sone Ki Chidiya Total Reform Movement forward since it is very unlikely that major parties will implement the agenda for reform that it is preparing.

The idea was to create a Sone Ki Chidiya Party, but upon reflection and discussion, and after voting, it became clear that the name of the party should not be the same as that of the movement. I won't go into details but let's just say that it was a difficult decision: changing the name of a previosly conceptualised party at the last minute.

However, the alternative name that was proposed and finalised, is VERY SIMILAR to the Sone Ki Chidiya brand. Swarna Bharat represents an India that is not just shining but made of gold.

We were looking for a name that would reflect the GLORY that we want India to achieve. It is just not enough to talk about people's power or the common man. We must have that. But the PURPOSE of that power must be clear: to create a society with liberty and prosperity. Janata Party, Lok Satta Party, Aam Aadmi Party are all variants on the deeper democracy theme.

Sure. We all want deeper democracy. But it is the results of democracy that we care for in the end. Does democracy yield prosperity? Does it yield integrity in public life? If not then why does one care for democracy? What's so great about India's CORRUPT "democracy"?

In brief, the name Swarna Bharat is a benchmark. It is an aspiration that will never come to an end. No matter how much progress India makes in the future, there will still be something more to achieve.

Swarna Bharat is not a passive name that accepts what is found in India today. And it steers away from inane concepts such as "common man" or people's power. We've had such ideas for 65 years and all we see as a result of these democracy-centric ideas is a super-corrupt "democracy" and extreme poverty and illiteracy.

And so a resolution was made at a meeting in New Delhi to adopt the Swarna Bharat Party constitution (on SBP website) and to commence all steps to register this party with the Election Commission of India. That process has a window of 30 days, within which we must find 100 members with voter IDs.

One of the very surprising things discovered during this process is that a significant proportion of people in India haven't got their voter ID cards. Many people don't want to vote, or getting ID cards is too hard, or the address on their cards is outdated.

We need a good number of additional members to join SBP. To join you MUST have a valid voter ID. If you wish to join, please write to me at The process is very simple: you'll have to fill in a simple affidavit, get your voter ID attested, and send your papers along with Rs.100 lifetime membership fee to the Delhi office of the party.


This party is designed to be a PLATFORM. A vessel. A receptacle.

The party will try to convene a national convention (plenary session) in the next few months to determine whether the country wants to REALLY fight for its liberties or is full of petty egos and other confusions that lead only to victory for the corrupt.

I envisage such an event would have at least 1000 participants from all over India, with a clear challenge thrown at them: MERGE OR BE A LOSER FOR EVER!!!

Now, I will never ask anyone to merge unless the WHOLE merger has been worked out in advance. Piecemeal mergers are worse than no merger at all. They create further confusion. So it will have to be a TOTAL merger or none at all.

At the convention we could create a national executive of 75 people and state executives comprising many people in each state. EACH leader who merges will get a SIGNIFICANT role based on his/her demonstrated and/or potential strength. Membership to key positions will cost 50K to 1 lakh (according to the party constitution). Almost all positions will be open at that Convention (I've got one really superior intellectual in mind as Party President – but let's see if that materialises). We just need good people to come in and fill these roles. In fact there will be MORE positions than the sum total of all good groups in India today.

The convention should aim to run for at least four days. It should be held in a major city.

This party is NOT a normal party. Its sole purpose is to hammer ALL smallish efforts into one, on the basis of a common vision and agenda. Without such a platform, based on world-best practice, we are all wasting our time.

I invite all good groups in India, big and small, to write to me so we can set up an organising committee for this Convention.

Do India liberals and others have the capacity to come together and work on a single platform? Or do they want to ply their own journeys separately – journeys which are guaranteed to fail.

Do we want reform or are we keen to perenially remain on the fringe?

4 June event

In the meanwhile we will continue to also run the Sone Ki Chidiya Total Reform movement in which I invite all good groups to join.  "Good" socialists may attend but with an open mind and willingness to learn.

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