Thursday, 9 January 2014

After all Manmohan Singh has not done that badly!



With Prime Minister Manmohan Singh having ruled out a possible third term for himself, it would be prudent to gauge his success and failure in the economic front. If economy is the yardstick for any Prime Minister’s success, then Manmohan Singh has done reasonably well. After being targeted for long, the Manmohan Singh government has not done all that badly on the economic front. On the contrary he has faced economic tight walk with conviction and confidence in face of adverse situation worldwide. Since he does not talk much nor he is  in the habit of trumpeting his achievements, this positive was overshadowed by flak the government faced on other fronts like scams and corruption highlighted by the opposition parties throughout his second term and the Aam Admi Party campaign on Lokpal and other issues.

The team led by an economist PM has achieved a substantial body of work to demonstrate its intent. Some statistics stand out. India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew at an annual average of 7.6% during the period, including the two latest years, that have been hit by a crippling slow down. It is an achievement by any standard, particularly at a time when the US and the European Union were reeling in recession. India’s national income is within striking distance of crossing the 2 trillion mark thereby joining the elite group of globe’s richest economies. 


The world has been watching carefully at the top international and Indian companies competing against each other to grab a slice of the huge market that should triple its size in the next decade or even earlier.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, in his recent press conference on a Friday, accepted that low employment generation is an aspect of performance, which the government is trying its best to rectify. India’s per capita is nearly Rs 70,000 a year. The figure gives an idea of the standard of living of the people, but that is not the entire truth as some glaring facts get hidden; as the rich Indians may have driven much of the growth in income. As per the government data, even during the comfortable years of growth between 2004-05 to 2009-10 when the growth averaged 8.43%, the economy generated no more than two million jobs for the fifty five million people who were absorbed in the workforce. With the government trying to push new measures, there is reason for hope and a further boost to the economy. Will the government get the next term after the 2014 elections to do more is a question the voters will answer through ballot.

Will it be Congress under Rahul Gandhi or BJP under Narendra Modi or will the AAP again spoil the hopes of both the national parties? The momentum provided to the economy must go on if India has to make a mark amongst the major economies in the world and for the betterment of its people. Whoever forms the government must take this into account.


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