Universal basic income is hardly a new idea
March 05, 2019  10:16
"The ideas of public works to employ the poor, and food rations (what we in India called the PDS or the public distribution system) can be traced to Johannes Ludovicus Vives around the same time: "Even those who have dissipated their fortunes in dissolute living -- through gaming, harlots, excessive luxury, gluttony and gambling -- should be given food, for no one should die of hunger. However, smaller rations and more irksome tasks should be assigned to them so that they may be an example to others... They must not die of hunger, but they must feel its pangs... Even to the old and the stupid, it should be possible to give a job they can learn in a few days, such as digging holes, getting water or carrying something on their shoulders... being busy and engrossed in their work, they will abstain from those wicked thoughts and actions in which they would engage if they were idle."

Read Ashok V Desai's column for the Telegraph. 
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