Need to get over air of negativism: PM
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Need to get over air of negativism: PM

Last Updated: Saturday, October 22, 2011, 17:18
 
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Need to get over air of negativism: PM
New Delhi: With the opposition in a perennial combat mode, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Saturday asked parliamentary parties to strike a balance between adversarial political positions on issues and cooperating on long-term national agenda.

He also made a powerful appeal to various stakeholders to reverse the mood of "negativism" because both optimism and pessimism have an infectious quality.

"Elected governments can deliver only if... the political process works to allow government to function in a manner where the needs of longer term development do not become hostage to short term concerns.

"What this means is that parliamentary parties have to strike a difficult balance between maintaining adversarial political positions on many issues, while also cooperating to advance longer term national agenda. This balance is not easy to strike," he said addressing the National Development Council (NDC) here.

The NDC, attended by Union Ministers, Chief Ministers and Planning Commission members, has been convened to discuss the 12th Five Year Plan Approach Paper.

He said at times like this it was of vital importance that "democratic institutions, like the executive; judiciary; parliament and state legislatures; constitutional and regulatory authorities, understand their due role and play that in a constructive manner".

Singh said it was their collective responsibility to reverse the mood of negativism Saturday. "The future is what we make of it. Nothing is ordained or pre-determined. India can rise, but India can also falter. We live in a world of rising and faltering economies.

"We can either become victims of negativism, criticising ourselves all the way, or work together to put ourselves firmly in the group of rising economies. Both optimism and pessimism have an infectious quality".

Asserting that current economic slowdown was a matter of concern, Singh said, "it should be seen as a short-term phenomenon, reflecting highly unsettled conditions in the world economy...we must guard against the mood of negativism that seems to have gripped the country."

As regards the 9 percent growth target for the 12th Plan, the Prime Minister said, "it is relevant to ask whether this is feasible since the economy is currently slowing down".

While setting targets for the next Plan, he added, "we must look at longer term potential, assuming that the immediate short-term problems will be overcome. I have absolutely no doubt that our country's longer term prospects are very good".

Growth rates, he added, were being revised downwards in all the countries for the current year.

Indian economy, which recorded a growth rate of 8.5 percent in 2010-11, is expected to moderate to about 8 percent during the current fiscal. During the first quarter of the current fiscal the growth slipped to 7.7 percent from 8.8 percent a year ago.

Pointing out that the world is going through a major realignment of economic power and emerging markets are becoming important, Singh said, "Our policies in the 12th Five

Year Plan must, therefore, be shaped to take full advantage of these emerging possibilities."

He said although much of the growth is driven by private sector, the government has a role to play in providing a policy environment for encouraging farmers and entrepreneurs.

"This includes an environment of macro-economic stability, efficient functioning markets... a sound financial system for allocating financial resources, good governance with transparency and effective enforcement of the rule of law," Singh added.

PTI




First Published: Saturday, October 22, 2011, 10:26


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