Foreword to the Book on Social Insurance
by M. R. Idgunji
MR. M. R. IDGUNJI'S book on Social insurance and India is a well planned treatise.
It is divided into two parts. Part-1 is general and deals with two main topics (1) the two principal branches of social insurance, vis., (i) Workmen's Compensation (ii) the different Financial aspects of Social insurance such as the Financial resources, the actuarial technique and financial administration. The discussion of the financial aspects of social insurance is aimed to explain the various problems connected with the financial resources required for the working of social insurance schemes, the various systems according to which the resources can be organised so as to have social insurance schemes working on sound lines and the problems of Administration connected with the financial side of social insurance.
Part-11 deals with the problem of social insurance in relation to conditions prevalent in India. In this part the provision of the Indian Workmen's Compensation Act 1923, and of sickness Insurance are subjected to critical examination. In addition to this, there is a discussion of the Beveridge plan of Social Security and of the scheme of social security adopted in New Zealand. The discussion ends by an exploration of the possibilities for social security measures in India. The author holds the view that sound social insurance measures are not feasible in India unless certain fundamental difficulties are removed, and the country makes a substantial advance economically and is rid of the stark poverty that prevails in it today. The reasons in support of the stand he has taken are set out clearly and fearlessly. Realising that India is predominantly an agriculture country and that the agriculture population sadly needs protection, the author has suggested a scheme of crop insurance based on the principles of social insurance. If indeed a scheme of crop insurance be evolved on the lines suggested by the author, it should go a long way in bettering the conditions of the rural masses in our country and lessening the terrors of famines.
Social insurance is a new thing in India. The Indian contribution to the literature on the subject is naturally meagre. In the circumstances, Mr. ldgunji's book is sure to be welcomed by all students of the subject both as an addition to the scanty literature thereon and also as a critical examination of the problems arising out of it. His style is lucid and his exposition is very clear.
Fisher, Prof. : 632, 641, 642, 661, 664,
665,684 Fowler Committee : 630, 647, 651, 652,
654,655 Fowler Committee Report : 647, 652
Gold Exchange Standard : 629,630,634, 636,650,651,684
Gold Standard Reserve :.629, 630, 631,
634,645,646,652 Gregory, Prof.: 645
Royal Commission on Indian Currency : 634