Disinvesting the government’s stake in public sector units (PSUs) to fund social sector programmes is a poor use of taxpayers’ money.
There are fears that you may do that. A 24 June PTI report, quoting economists, raised this spectre. PSU investments have been made over many decades and represent allocations made in times when resources were much more scarce than they are today. So, to fritter them away on programmes such as the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme or fiscal packages of dubious utility would be a waste.
If you want to channel resources for infrastructure creation, a better idea would be to do so through the national investment fund. Money from this fund should be appropriated through parliamentary approval. There should be strict auditing of its use. In any case, such proceeds (and those from 3G spectrum auctions) should not be used on a project-by-project basis. That would be a sure way to spend and get nothing in return.