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Amartya Sen says note ban undemocratic, dubs it unguided missile

Amartya Sen says note ban undemocratic, dubs it unguided missile

Nobel laureate Amartya Sen on Saturday termed note ban as an unguided “missile” fired “unilaterally” by the government without adhering to the democratic conventions.

“Every now and then we get missiles fired by the government unilaterally,”Sen said. Demonetisation one fine morning is of course just such a missile where there are reports coming in of hardships and suffering though it is not quite clear where the missile has landed.”

The remark was made by Sen during a talk titled ‘Healthcare for all: Why and how’, was done while comparing decision-making in a democratic country like ours and the Communist China.

The Bharat Ratna awardee said decisions get taken in China based on the vision of a small group of people, while in a democracy like ours, things move only when there is a public demand for it.

“Our political decisions, however, in contrast have to involve the public,” he said, comparing India’s situation with China and going on to mention the demonetisation exercise as an aberration from such a convention.

Drawing attention to the critical challenges faced by the healthcare sector, the professor of economics and philosophy at Harvard said, “unilateral thoughts” like demonetisation cannot be of help.

“Firing unilateral thoughts are not the way to reform healthcare in the kind of democracy that is India,” Sen said.

US-based Sen has previously been critical of the demonetisation announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on November 8.