New Delhi: Asserting that the nation is bursting with dreams and fearless ideas, Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi on Thursday said that the spirit of the people of India is energetic and optimistic.
"Optimism for me is just like India, it is bursting with dreams and fearless ideas, brave ideas. Millions and millions of youngsters struggling every day with optimism," he said, while addressing the annual general meeting of industry body Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) here.
Gandhi, who spelt out his vision for economic growth of the country, said India is home to the largest pool of human capital the world has ever known and probably will ever know.
"And it is this movement of people, this tremendous movement of people and ideas that is going to define this country in the 21st century. It is this energy that is producing your best managers. It's driving the stock market and it's the energy providing labour for all your factories. It drives the consumption upon which your businesses are built," he added.
Asserting that democracy and technology have triggered a non-reversible chain reaction in India, Gandhi said: "This reaction is now unstoppable. Nobody can stop that. We have to channel this reaction."
The 42-year-old Congress leader said India is now sitting on an unstoppable tide of human aspiration.
"The tide is so great that it is going to move forward regardless of what we do. But for this massive movement of people and ideas to be truly transformational, we need to nurture it. We need to make it harmonious. We need to make it happen smoothly," he said, while emphasizing that there is a need to use the energy generated by the movement of people and ideas.
Gandhi told the business leaders that it is the responsibility of all to provide India with a physical infrastructure to enable the unprecedented movement of people and ideas.
"The first thing that we need to do is to accelerate this movement. It is our duty to provide India with a physical infrastructure to enable the unprecedented movement of people and ideas. This infrastructure needs to connect India. It needs to connect Indian villages. It needs to connect Indian cities and it needs to connect India to the rest of the world," said Gandhi.
"We have to provide the roads on which our dreams are paved. And these roads can't have potholes, they can't break down in six months. They have to be big roads because they are going to carry strong people, they are going to carry strong forces," he added.
Inaugurating the CII meeting here on Wednesday, Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh said that he is confident of achieving eight percent economic growth despite a disappointing performance over the last couple of years.
He urged captains of the Indian industry to correct the investment environment and reflect more carefully on their social responsibilities.
" Five percent growth is clearly disappointing, but added that the current economic downturn is temporary," he said.
Emphasizing on the need to restore macro-economic balance in the country, Dr. Singh expressed confidence that India would achieve the fiscal consolidation target.
Dr. Singh also stressed upon the need to tackle weak export performances and the high current account deficit.
The theme for this year's deliberation is "India Tomorrow: Imperatives of Growth, Security and Governance".
First Published: Thursday, April 4, 2013, 17:57