11 NUJS L. Rev. 1 (2018)
A Case for Universal Basic Income in India

handle is hein.journals/nujslr11 and id is 176 raw text is: 

S11 NUJS L. Rev. 2 (2018)


      A CASE FOR UNIVERSAL BASIC INCOME IN INDIA

                        Shrikrishna Upadhyaya & Sukriti*

Universal Basic Income ('UBI') is a regular cash payment made to all individuals by the State
without any means or work testing. It has historically been debated upon and more than a few
justifications for UBI have been made. UBI has entered policy debate in India ever since UBI was
proposed by the Economic Survey 2016-17 as a social welfare scheme suitable for India. In this
paper, a normative justification for UBI is sought to be arrived at. A right to basic income, by
promoting 'real freedom' of individuals is said to be a part of the conception of substantive dignity of
all individuals. It is important for the actualisation of other rights and freedoms of an individual.
Associated benefits of UBI include realizing the right to adequate standard of living, respecting
autonomy rights of individuals and as a policy intervention in combating poverty and inequality. The
lessons from UBI experiments conducted in different places also sufficiently highlight the advantages
of UBI. The challenges in implementing UBI in India are discussed in the course of this paper
alongside a critical analysis of a model that seeks to overcome these challenges.

                                Table of Contents
LI IN TR O D U C TIO N   ................................................................................................................... 2
II. CONCEPTION OF SUBSTANTIVE DIGNITY: LOCATING A RIGHT TO BASIC
IN C O M E   .................................................................................................................................... 4
   A. UNDERSTANDING        DIGNITY   ..................................................................................... 4
   B. TOWARDS SUBSTANTIVE DIGNITY ........................................................................ 6
   C. RIGHT TO BASIC INCOME AS AN INTEGRAL PART OF SUBSTANTIVE DIGNITY12
II CERTAIN FACETS OF RIGHT TO BASIC INCOME .................................................. 15
   A. RIGHT TO ADEQUATE STANDARD OF LIVING .................................................... 16
   B. WOM EN AND  BASIC  INCOM E ................................................................................ 17
   C. POVERTY IS A RIGHTS VIOLATION ....................................................................... 21
   D. MENTAL HEALTH AND BASIC INCOME .............................................................. 25
IV UNIVERSAL BASIC INCOME ('UBI') FOR INDIA: THE WAY FORWARD .............. 28
   A. BACKGRO  UND  ON  UBI ........................................................................................... 28
   B. EMPIRICAL EVIDENCE IN SUPPORT OF UBI FROM AROUND THE WORLD ..... 29
     1. A laska, United  States  of  Am erica  ..........................................................................  29
     2 .  B ra z il  .......................................................................................................................... 3 0
     3 .  N a m ib ia   ...................................................................................................................... 3 2
     4. M adhya P radesh, India  .......................................................................................... 34
     5 .  F in la n d   ....................................................................................................................... 3 7
     6 .  K e n y a   .......................................................................................................................... 3 8
   C. LESSONS FOR INDIA FROM THE SUCCESS OF UBI EXPERIMENTS ................ 39
   D. COMMON MYTHS ABOUT UBI ............................................................................... 43
     1. UBI's Impact on  W ork  ...........................................................................................  43
     2. UBI's Impact on  Temptation  Goods ......................................................................  44


April - June, 2018


NUJS Law Review

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