ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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From 50 Years Ago: Nineteen Eighty

Letter from Moscow, from, Vol XIII No 32, August 12, 1961.

Samar Sen The Russians, though proud of the 20-year plan for peace and plenty and confident that they will make it, are not overwhelmed be-cause they have got used to taking things, small or big, in their stride. And living in Moscow, we foreigners, too, are not startled – the plan is in the course of things. From the literary point of view, however, the document is not inspiring; it is pedestrian. The main points which one noticed skip-ping through the huge document on a hot Sunday morning are: By 1980 there will be free housing and later, free gas, water and heating; free public transport and gradual introduction of free lunches at factories and offices and for collec-tive farmers engaged in production; free maintenance of children in nurseries and boarding schools (if parents wish); free, hot school meals and clothing; free maintenance of disabled people; free education at all edu-cational establishments; free medical services, including the supply of medicines and the treatment of sick persons at sanatoriums. By 1970 Russia will gradually go over to a 34 to 36-hour working week with a 30-hour week for miners and others doing arduous work…The Party says that during the next 20 years incomes will rise more than 3½ times. …Russia then [in 1980] will have the high-est [industrial] output per head in the world… In agriculture, the task is to increase the aggregate volume of production in 10 years by about 150 per cent and in 20 years by 250 per cent…

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