21 October, 2020

"Our Politicians Think Money Grows On Trees"

Former finance minister Manmohan Singh on swadeshi, populism, economic vision and prime ministerial aspirations.

"Our Politicians Think Money Grows On Trees"

The Left and the BJP say that your reforms have led to joblessness, scams, rural-urban divide.

There is no evidence to suggest that liberalisation has led to joblessness. Planning Commission data suggests that jobs have been increasing every year since 1991. Critics, therefore, are mouthing their prejudices. As for scams, the securities scam had its origins in 1986. It was the by-product of over-regimented, unenforceable systems in which banks were restricted from lending to more profitable areas. Reforms have actually improved the terms of trade for agriculture. A 1 per cent improvement adds Rs 8,000 crore to agricultural income. Even the incidence of poverty has declined. The national sample survey 1993-94 substantiates this.

What about the anxiety that TNCs will swallow up domestic companies and brands?

In a dynamic economy, there will be some buyouts. We have a transparent takeover code to take care of well-managed companies. Managements cannot take for granted that they have a franchise for life. However, to prevent monopolistic islands, we need...



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