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5. FINANCIAL POLICY
The treasury has its source in the mines.
From (the strength of) the treasury the army is born.
Through the treasury and the army, the earth, whose adornment is the treasury, is obtained.
Material wealth alone is important, says Kautilya, for, both righteousness and pleasure are based on material wealth.
Even after winning (a battle) a ruler with a weak army and treasury is a loser.
In inactivity there is certain destruction (sure loss) of what has been achieved and of what is to come.
By activity, objectives are achieved and abundance of wealth acquired.
Riches, righteousness and physical pleasures—these are the three kinds of wealth. It is preferable to first attain the earlier mentioned ones than the latter.
Absence of riches, absence of righteousness and absence of enjoyment are the three kinds of poverty. It is preferable to counteract the ones mentioned earlier first than the latter.
The launching of all programmes depends first and foremost on the (resources of the) treasury.
Since righteousness is the root of wealth and enjoyment its fruit, attainment of wealth linked to righteousness and enjoyment is attainment of all riches.
A ruler with a depleted treasury will devour the citizens of cities and the people of villages.
Men without wealth do not attain their objectives even after hundreds of trials.
Only through wealth can material gains be acquired, as elephants (wild) can be captured only by elephants (tamed).
A state with depleted resources, even if acquired, becomes only a liability.
Just as only ripe fruits are collected from a garden, so too the fruits of the state (revenue) should be collected only when due. Collection of unripe fruits (premature collection of revenue) should be avoided as this will generate the wrath of the people and result in self-destruction.