ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846
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Rationing in a Peri-Urban Community-Case Study of a Squatter Habitat

 once it is perceived that a rational wage policy cannot be visualised when there are groups of people who continue to receive large incomes without doing any work or only do work which does -not require such large incomes to be paid, we are implicitly arguing for a society where property is abolished. Once we have done that, however, the point of arguing for a wage policy with a mixed economy as the frame of reference is lost, unless, or course, it is believed that one can still argue for control of incomes without abolishing property; that without upsetting the basic institutional framework of a mixed economy, it is possible to implement a rational wage policy. For, Das Gupta has attempted to arrive at a national wage policy not with a socialist economy but with an India-type mixed economy as his frame of reference. Perhaps, several comments are in order. First, it may be argued that the whole exercise is still worthwhile even if one is pessimistic about the possi- KERALA state is comprehensively covered by, what is called, a system of informal rationing.* Informal rationing is distinguished from statutory rationing by the fact that, under the former system, a free market can legally operate for the commodities covered. Practically every household in the state, rural or urban, holds a ration card and is entitled to buy the rationed items at controlled prices. Only for the rice ration are some households

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