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Indian economy throws up a challenge

In a highly competitive globalised world, it is essential for the public to keep themselves abreast of the changes in different sectors, particularly economy. The editorial ‘Growth is slipping’ (February 9) shared concerns with the government in arresting the continuous economic decline monitored in terms of the ‘growth rate’ which is said to have fallen to 5 per cent in the current year from over 9 per cent in early 2011.

The UPA government has tried to adjust its monetary and fiscal policies to control the high rate of inflation during these years. The private sector has responded as it should to safeguard its interests. A sizeable chunk of population remained in their world of oblivion unmindful of the fact that in an integrated world, the doings of each section of society and each person has its impact in one way or the other. The result is the present situation marked with low growth, which is being considered unsatisfactory for its consequences having a general impact.

The desirability of enhancing the economic growth rate and reducing the fiscal deficit in the face of high inflationary trends and impending elections poses a peculiar challenge to the governments in power in the states and at the Centre. How a particular administrative dispensation responds to the situation is a test of its political skills and economic responsibility in the current Indian scenario where governance in many cases has become a delicate phenomenon in normal times and a bit more challenging in the election years.

But, where there is will, there is a way. The prevalent conditions are no exception. Let the political leadership show, with all the available expertise and resources, how well it can govern.



One factor that poses the biggest obstacle to the government in chalking out its strategy to take remedial measures is the failure of the policy makers to understand the situation at the ground level.  

According to set policy, the UPA government is more than willing to satisfy international finance capital and Indian big business.  Banking reforms have been legislated which completely undo the gains of bank nationalisation done in 1969.  

FDI is permitted to access Indian’s huge pension fund.  This would lead to large-scale slowing down of economy. There is a faint hope that future revisions in the statistics will show the economy in better light, though claims are continuously being made by the government. The real earnings of the people would continue to ebb.

The government must reverse the current neo-liberal policies. Data clearly shows that unless the government does not take immediate measures to prop up growth there is a real danger that the GDP numbers may touch an abysmal 4 per cent level recorded during 2002-03, before the UPA came to power.

The root cause of slowing development is a sluggish agriculture, which needs urgent reforms like better irrigation, high yielding seeds, affordable and hassle-free bank loans. Serious efforts must be made to build our public infrastructure and consequently generate employment. Improvement in public distribution system is the need of the hour. The purchasing power of the people must be increased, instead of showing them dreams of an increasing GDP.

SK KHOSLA, Chandigarh

Academic barrier

Mathematics and Science are two important subjects which not only are good options for a future career in engineering, medical sciences, etc but they play an important role in developing objective rational thinking power of students.

Various state government schools are teaching these subjects in their respective regional languages up to Class X. At the senior secondary level, they are left in the lurch to comprehend concepts in English, which they earlier understood in Hindi or in any other vernacular. By then, the damage is already done.

Maths and Science should be taught in English medium right from Class I. How many Indian colleges of medicine and engineering offer BE and MBBS courses in Punjabi, Oriya or Telugu?


Save for elders

The population of senior citizens is increasing day by day in our country, at present about 7-8 per cent population comprises of senior citizens. Due to the indifferent attitude of state and central governments, people who have no pension or a fixed source of income in old age are living in a miserable condition.

I would request the Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister to extend facilities like free bus and rail travel, free medical care, harmony lodges or good weekly pension to non-pensioner senior citizens. Luxury expenses should be curtailed by the government to save for the elders as is done in western countries so that they can live a life of dignity. The government grants a meager old age pension of Rs 250 per month which is just a joke on the elders.

VED MITTER, Nalagarh (Solan)

Means of fulfilment

When many countries across the world are not permitting surrogacy and have imposed a ban, what are the merits seen by India while allowing surrogacy? (Anil Malhotra’s article ‘New medical visa laws to regulate surrogacy’, February 5). A thorough study of the subject and the reasons why the other countries have banned it must be looked into before regulating surrogacy. One of the recommendations of the law commission says: one of the intended parents should be a donor to foster the bond of love which will also check chances of child abuse. Instead of one, both the intended parents should be donors.

If, donor is one, in case of divorce of the commissioning couple, the custody of the child should go to  the donor.

Subsequent unwillingness to take the baby should be treated as a crime against the baby and the surrogate mother as both would be the sufferers. Only financial support is not sufficient because paying a financial penalty will be no big deal for rich couples, what every individual needs is emotional sustainability.




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