New India Manifesto – Chapter 19: Honour Enhancement Employment System
Honour Enhancement Employment System aims to increase and adjust the prestige and dignity associated with various professions, thereby changing society’s social and economic fabric. It is a systemic-level attempt to reconstruct people’s perspectives towards different jobs, businesses and related lifestyles. Honour enhancement works by either increasing some factors or decreasing and taming certain other factors.
Consider the Following Scenarios
Individual A is ready to work as a private CBSE school teacher at 8000 per month or a bank at 10,000 per month. Individual A currently works in a factory for 12,000 rupees. Since becoming a teacher or bank employee is considered a more respectable position in society, the person is ready to quit and take a new job with a lesser salary.
A woman chooses to marry a government servant over a self-employed shop owner who makes more than a government servant because a government job is considered more secure and honourable in society.
The daughter of a manual scavenger cannot find a marital alliance due to her father’s occupation.
People, especially children, refuse to go to an old-school hair salon because it does not have a machine cut.
Many people in a particular location concerned about hygiene avoid a specific food business centre in their area as the food stall owner is not wearing a shirt while cooking, and the food is unclean.
Regarding specific jobs such as manual scavenging, people themselves consider ashamed to do that job due to the perception of others towards people doing that job. However, in some jobs, people are not concerned about what others think and continue to do their jobs.
In certain businesses, such as food stalls, even if it is made unhygienic and breaks all rules of FSSAI, as long as there are customers for their food, they are not concerned about anything. There is also a section of people who might have had negative experiences regarding the hygiene conditions of food stalls and will stereotype roadside businesses as generally unhygienic based on these experiences.
Even if some people need money and are unemployed, people working as IT employees or bank employees will not take jobs such as farm labourer, construction jobs or any other jobs they believe are not honourable. Instead, they will be unemployed and wait until they get a job in a field they desire and are not ready to do any job that lowers their status.
All top-level bureaucrats and high-level politicians require another lower rank officer’s assistance to open their vehicle’s car door. Their lifestyle and policies display these people’s sir culture and head weight. Adding maids as a freebie to various bureaucrats exemplifies how these people have designed a system to please themselves.
There are different maids to serve people in cooking, gardening and cleaning for higher authorities. The maid culture is so influential in India that almost all rich people employ a maid in their homes. People who work as a maid earn less than five times or ten times what the employer of a maid makes. If the income disparity between the employer and maid were less than five times, then the people who work as maids would have received more respect. Instead, most employers treat maids as part of the ‘use and throw’ culture as many people, especially women without education and income, are ready to do this job. Many middle-class and wealthy families also consider employing a maid a status symbol.
Methods of Implementing Honour Enhancement Employment System
A. Maximising the Honour Enhancement Based on Security, Hygiene, Technology and Appearance
For specific jobs, even if a person is interested in continuing in the way it existed before, the state should force to change the pattern. The person is in the informal sector and is not reaching specific living standards, affecting the nation’s progress.
Consider a small shop owner that sells fruits and earns less than 200 daily after expenses. There are four primary ways to enhance the honour of that person, from which government also benefits by bringing them under a formal system.
A1. Relocating the person to another business or employment that helps them earn more.
A2. Helping the person to earn more by investing in increasing hygiene and aesthetic appeal. Provide good stands to place fruits and digitising business by providing mobile billing printers. Provide transparent covers to ensure that dust from the road does not settle on the fruits and convince the public to purchase fruits from such hygienic shops. This support should be provided for free, and the amount invested to provide such free support should be less than 15000 rupees.
A3. Relocating the person to the same business at another fixed physical location with more features or existing shop conversion model.
Different models can be applied in shop remodelling. Street Vendor Rehabilitation Initiative in National Employment System provides another approach.
The shops’ conversion model remodels the physical structure to meet international safety, hygiene and appearance standards.
Changing the aesthetic appearance and hygiene of existing businesses such as salons, laundry businesses, grocery shops, food stalls, and fruit stalls is the priority. People running these small businesses run these shops with worn-out wall paints and an unhygienic environment. It also includes cottage businesses.
Building Multimedia Database with video proof under the Land and Building Accounting System will help find all the businesses that need aesthetic enhancement, hygienic improvement and safety improvement.
In this model, select an existing shop under the Land and Building Accounting System that is not hygienic and does not comply with safety standards.
Find whether the owner is ready to remodel the shop. Government should try to convince the owner by saying that the building and business are non-compliant with existing laws. Mention that if the business is remodelled, it will increase the customer base. There should also be a market for a higher customer base. Initially, find people who also own the place instead of those using rented-out places.
Interior designers and engineers with skills in doing electrician, plumbing and fabrication works can design a model and cost for the project. They will submit the plan and cost to a particular section created under the National Employment System website.
After the project is approved, the government will fund in advance to the remodelling crew in 2-3 instalments.
After remodelling, place a loan in the name of businessmen without interest with a repayment period of higher than seven years. Subsidise 30 per cent of the principal amount. The total amount of the loan will be less than 1 lakh. An independent body checks the contractor, ensures the standards are met, and decides whether there is a deviation from the submitted plan or whether further work needs to be provided to the contractor. In addition, the independent body should collect video footage of the remodelled structure.
The government can regain the subsidy and interest lost slowly in coming years via GST once the remodelled business is enlisted under the GST system. So, after some years, the government will be able to get back the amount spent.
The shops can extend the loan if they are affected by natural calamities such as floods. Government can also provide free shop insurance to small businesses for the first two years. After that, mandatory insurance for shops can be introduced slowly so that people can recover from losses after natural calamities.
The project’s beneficiary, i.e., the small business owner, can earn more money after remodelling and will get more clients. It will also ensure that safety and hygiene standards are met and public welfare is prioritised. As a result, the honour of all small businesses will be enhanced.
Free classes prioritising hygiene should be provided to food business owners and workers for people engaged in unhygienic cooking after remodelling. They should also be provided ideas and live demo examples to make their food tastier. In the case of salons, old-school people should be taught by younger generations how to change their methods to make them more appealing to the public.
A4. Systemic support to exit workforce for vulnerable section
When an older woman sells a few vegetables in the street, the things that come to a person with a conscience are
- How is she able to survive by selling few vegetables?
- She is too old and has to work even now.
- Should I buy from her to support her?
Here people make sympathy purchases instead of necessity-based purchases. Here in this situation, if the women above 70 are working out of desperation, then such people need to be supported by care homes and the national food bank. In addition, they should be provided with A1, A2 or A3 options if they want to work further. Training them to formalise their jobs is challenging, so the best option if they want to keep working is to provide simpler jobs under certain companies that require such labour. They should be able to exit the workforce if they want to, and the ready alternative under care homes should be available. This is also a part of honour enhancement; they are provided with a better life, better facilities, and good food for free.
Honour Enhancement of Workers of Various Sectors
- Aborists and Woodcutting: Introduce Mechanisation and safety tools for these jobs and distribute safety kits for free.
- Construction job: Jackets, helmets, gloves and shoes should be introduced for free to the construction workers.
- Manual scavenging: Sewer suction machines should be introduced to stop manual scavenging.
- Headloading: Forklifting machines will be introduced wherever possible.
Initially, these items, like safety jackets, should be distributed for free to the masses, and later they should be made compulsory after 1-2 years. Once it is made mandatory, it can be stopped given for free.
Honour enhancement is not just introducing mechanisation but also increasing wages and income. For example, if a farmer is provided with a machine, it may help reduce the farmer’s load. However, it does not ensure higher income for the farmer. So the government needs to ensure that different types of systemic intervention increase the farmer’s income.
Honour enhancement based on enhanced security facilities of the structure and security of person, increased hygiene of products sold, advanced technology used in businesses and modernised appearance is implemented in different ways as provided in the above examples.
B. Hierarchical Structure Honour Adjustment
The salary difference between various jobs within the same department is too high in India. For example, a person with a clerical post will receive five times less than the manager. There are two ways to address this issue. The first way to adjust this issue is to adjust the clerk’s salary to the manager’s by increasing the clerk’s salary. The five times difference in pay should be changed to three times difference. The second way is to bring down the salary of the manager. If people with the same skills are ready to do the same job in the same way as the manager at a lower wage, then the manager is overpaid. In such a scenario, the salary of the manager should be reduced. Unfair honour and prestige received by managers are cut down partially by lowering pay. At the same time, the clerk can get a better wage that helps to enhance their honour.
C. Maximising Honour by Making People from All Sections, Including Rich and Poor Alike to be Part of a Profession
The gig and part-time jobs provided to students are central to honour enhancement. Once the student community starts doing small gig jobs such as painting, and cleaning, people around them and their families will also begin to respect those jobs.
The formalisation of the economy will bring new clients for smaller businesses and shops. Small shops require billing support and labourers, which they can quickly recruit from college students via National Employment System part-time jobs. So small businesses will earn more respect, accelerating their growth.
D. Maximising Honour by Removing People from Low-Honour Professions and Creating Systemic Intervention Demand for Low-Honour Job, Thereby Increasing Wages for Such Employment.
Honour Enhancement Employment System should change how various jobs exist now. From the army to bureaucracy employing maids to look after them should be stopped. Opening car doors of superiors, tying laces of shoes, and working as an enslaved person under a boss should be stopped, and all legislations favouring that should be nulled. Cooking food, cleaning the house and washing dishes will start to be done by bureaucrats and politicians themselves, and the state should not directly provide them. In case they want to appoint a maid, they can do it by themselves via labour guilds, and the state should not directly allot them.
Additionally, at least thirty per cent of the existing maid workforce should be provided jobs with better pay in the private sector or under various public projects such as food banks. By creating a scarcity of maids, their demand will rise, and they will be treated with respect and provided with good salaries. As a result, the maid will transition from maids to homecare professionals with better dignity and respect. Furthermore, the government will promote a culture where people can do household chores independently.
E. Bringing Radical Changes in Social Factors Such as Ending Discrimination Based on Caste, Religion, Ethnicity, Gender and Disability.
Associated Aspects of the Honour Enhancement Employment System
Associated aspects are not related to the job but to the income received.
The enormous benefits of a higher income include the freedom to pursue what matters and accumulate whatever one wants, such as a mansion, luxurious cars or jewellery. However, it is impossible to equally distribute these resources and ensure the honour enhancement of poor people. Systemic intervention in honour enhancement can confirm that some of the necessary associated aspects, such as a safe house, are prioritised. A person’s basic needs are not limited to food, clothes and shelter. It should be extended to the internet connection, smartphones, safe houses, vehicles to travel and electronic items such as fridges. Some aspects are targeted and promoted, whereas the system downvotes some aspects.
Associated aspects of honour enhancement where systemic intervention is required include
A. Travel Mode Influence
Instead of promoting everyone to buy a luxurious car like the BMW or SUV, the government can promote cycle culture, EV 2-wheelers and public transportation systems. People may change their mode of travel to an EV cycle if the workplace is within a 2 km range. Once steps are taken to stop forced location loss, the cycle can be promoted. In addition, taxes on private vehicles that run on petroleum fuels taxes can be increased. Using luxurious personal cars should no longer be a status symbol and should be a burden.
Once these are implemented, the poor, middle class and wealthy will use cycles or EV 2-wheelers for short-distance travel. We can reduce oil dependence on foreign nations and enhance the honour of bicycles and small EV vehicles.
B. House Influence
The system should prioritise smaller houses with all the necessary facilities instead of large ones, which are impossible to be distributed among all. Furthermore, the government should promote the completion of incomplete house works. Most houses of the poor and middle class need better wiring and electrical works, incomplete plastering, incomplete painting works, and years of non-maintenance. In addition, most homes do not have metal pipes and concrete pillars and cannot withstand one major flood.
So, loans and the banking system should focus on fixing houses below 1000 square feet. People building larger homes by taking loans will affect the resource availability and pricing of lower square feet houses.
The system should intervene to tax houses with larger square feet with higher taxes. In addition, all utilities provided to large homes should have additional base charges. Having a large house such as 4000 square feet should be a burden.
Encouraging smaller houses with all facilities and at the same time discouraging larger homes should be the government agenda. This will help reduce more enormous loan burdens of people in the name of housing.
Special Note: This is the nineteenth chapter of the book New India Manifesto by Blessen T. Sam. The concepts introduced in this book are unique, and referencing the book and the author is appreciated. Support the hard work of the author to modernise India by purchasing a print copy of the book from Amazon or Flipkart.