Chidambaram equates Street vendors with beggers

Former Finance Minister and senior Congress leader P. Chidambaram equated Street vendors with beggers,
In a series of tweets he made targeting the government for its policies in creating jobs. The veteran politician alleged that the current day government is “clueless” on job creation. “Even selling pakodas is a ‘job’ said PM. By that logic, even begging is a job. Let’s count poor or disabled persons who are forced to beg for a living as ’employed’ people,” he said in one of his tweets.

The tweet was in reference to an interview of Prime Minister, where he had questioned whether a person who earns 200 rupees a day by selling Pakodas would be considered employed or not? It must be noted that nowhere in his interview Prime Minister called selling Pakodas a job as former minister suggested.

Prime Minister was probably right when he called those who sell Pakodas as employed people because those who run businesses are considered self-employed and not unemployed.

Here is the definition of self-employed :-

ˌsɛlfɪmˈplɔɪm(ə)nt/

noun

the state of working for oneself as a freelance or the owner of a business rather than for an employer.

Selling Pakodas is indeed a business even if very small and can’t be equated with begging. The definition of selling is giving something in return of money. Where the definition of begging is asking for money as charity without giving anything in return.

Though there might not have been any intentions of the former finance minister to insult Pakoda sellers but still comparing their business with begging may not be fair. Thousands of poor street vendors across the country sell various things including Pakodas to earn money. They don’t beg but work hard for their bread and butter just like people in any other profession.

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