Abhijit Banerjee, the 2019 Nobel Economics prize winner has a connection with the Indian National Congress. The noted Professor of Economics at MIT was instrumental in preparing the NYAY scheme proposed by the Congress party in its 2019 general election manifesto. The scheme announced by the party sought to enact a law which will enable cash distribution to the tune of Rs 6,000 per month to 20% of India’s poorest families as a minimum guarantee.
The scheme suggested by Abhijit Banerjee included a minimum income guarantee of Rs 2,500 per month, which would’ve cost the exchequer Rs 1.50 lakh crore and would fit within the parameters of fiscal discipline. The Congress, however, proposed a more expansive scheme , promising a minimum income guarantee of Rs 6,000 per month, costing the exchequer a mammoth outlay of Rs 3.60 lakh crore.
This load on the exchequer would have had to be balanced by generation of additional resources through implementation of higher taxes. Though the NYAY scheme never saw the light of day, Banerjee believed that it had the potential to bring about credibility that could’ve helped remove some of the existing subsidies in the future.
Rahul Gandhi congratulated Abhijit Banerjee on winning the coveted prize by saying that his brainchild (the NYAY scheme) had the power to destroy poverty and boost the Indian economy.