What is Universal Basic Income?

Universal Basic Income:
  • Universal Basic Income (UBI) is a programme for providing all citizens of a country or other geographic area/state with a given sum of money, regardless of their income, resources or employment status.
  • The main idea behind UBI is to prevent or reduce poverty and increase equality among citizens.
  • As per Basic Income Earth Network (BIEN), the essential principle behind Universal basic income is the idea that all citizens are entitled to a livable income, irrespective of the circumstances they're born in.
Funding for UBI - Initial plan:
  • The SDF government has already considered the "affordability" of the scheme.
  • 1. The successful implementation of the hydropower projects by the state has made it a surplus power generating state.
  • The state produces 2200 MW and it will go up to 3000 MW in the next few years. 
  • The state's requirement is only 200-300 MW and the rest goes to power trading firms. 
  • When this money comes in, we as SDF feels its people's money and it should be utilized for them.
  • 2. Sikkim also plans to subsume other subsidies and allowances in order to provide a particular amount every month to people.
  • Other places where UBI/similar programmes were implemented
  • In 2011-2013, Madhya Pradesh, India started Madhya Pradesh Unconditional Cash Transfers Project where Rs. 300 were provided to every single adult and Rs. 150 to children. It is considered a successful experiment as the living conditions improved drastically.
  • Similar programs include MINCOME in Canada and Basic Income Grant in Namibia, which also have shown successful results.
  • The advocates of the UBI praise the concept as futuristic which will allow the people to look into the future without worrying too much about income to survive.