BHARATIYA JANATA PARTY National Executive Meeting
Hyderabad -- January 11-12, 2004
Banish poverty, create wealth, make India an Economic Superpower
After six years of NDA Government headed by Prime Minister Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee, the fundamentals of the Indian economy have emerged stronger than ever before. The country is poised for an economic leap that will enable it to tackle age-old problems of poverty and under development and elevate living standards of the people significantly. India is scripting one of the most inspiring success stories in recent times.
The economy has grown in the second quarter of the current financial year by 8.4 per cent and it is likely that this growth will be sustained through out 2004. Higher growth rates will imply larger economy activity, larger generation of wealth, quicker eradication of poverty and a larger job creation. Already the depletion in the past six years of the numbers living below the poverty line is among the highest.
The spectacular growth rate has freed India from the dubious distinction, acquired after decades of Congress misrule, that the economy at best grow sluggishly at a 3.5 per cent “Hindu” rate of growth. No wonder the Congress President is unable to stomach this achievement and does her utmost to ridicule it.
The rate of inflation, which routinely touched double digits during earlier Governments run by the Congress, has been contained to modest levels.
The corporate balance sheets have never looked better. The stock market is booming to its best ever performance. Agriculture is poised for an all time high production. The service sector is expanding at a very rapid pace.
India’s status as a competitive economy has grown to such an extent that even developed economies are worried about loss of service sector jobs to India.
The foreign exchange reserves have crossed a comfortable US Dollars 100 billion mark. India is no longer dependent on the charity of the international community for its well-being.
Under the NDA Government, the past six years has seen India transforming itself from an economy built on shortages to an economy governed by surplus. This dramatic transformation has enriched the quality of life of the common man.
The bold and decisive policies of the NDA Government have ushered a telecom revolution and made efficient services available to a common citizen at affordable prices. The long queues for telephones and gas connections and before ration shops and milk booths have been eliminated. For the first time in living memory, consumers are able to exercise choice.
The low tax regime and the gradual decline in interest rates has provided Indians with a disposable surplus. Housing loans are now available at rock bottom interest rates. The NDA Government is bringing the dream of the average Indian to acquire a roof over his head at reasonable price closer to reality. Having achieved food surplus, the NDA Government has leveraged it into the world's largest Food Security Programme.
India is the envy of the world for its rise as an IT super power. It is emerging as a veritable knowledge center of the world. India is emerging as a global hub in Research and Development, designs and even in health care. The six new AIIMS proposed to be set up will lift the quality of health care in the country.
The NDA Government’s tenure has witnessed the growth of several sectors such as pharmaceuticals, biotech and automobiles. The export growth has been an important engine of pulling the GDP growth. The taxation procedures have been simplified to help the citizen from the Babudom. Even the much neglected sector of tourism has witnessed a boost and India is showing the potential of becoming a tourism hub.
Once known for its inadequacies, the automobile industry has transformed under the NDA Government into a producer of quality and cost effective vehicles which are being sold worldwide. Low interest rates have made the ownership of vehicles possible for large numbers of Indians.
Thanks to the personal initiative of the Prime Minister, India has now the largest National Highways and Road building programmes. The completion of the Golden Quadrilateral and Rural Roads will transform the economic face of India. The new scheme of interlinking rivers besides generating employment will ensure rural enrichment.
The initiative taken by the government under income generating insurance scheme to the farmers can lift the farmers from the uncertainties of income.
The Indian Farm sector has benefited from several schemes of the NDA Government such as low interest rates, Kisan Credit Cards and Crop Insurance and subsidy and cold storage.
There is a mood of resurgence within India and a dramatic change in the external perception of India. India’s voice counts in the world, as was evident in the leadership role it took on behalf of the developing world in the WTO.
Rapid depletion of poverty rates is taking place. The Bharatiya Janata Party commits itself to an economic agenda aimed at further banishing poverty, creating wealth and transforming India into an economic superpower. This is our Mission.
The Bharatiya Janata Party commits itself to the following :
1. TRANSFORM INDIA INTO A GLOBAL MANUFACTURING HUB
At present only 25 per cent of India’s GDP is contributed by India’s manufacturing sector. The share of manufacturing in the GDP has to expand. For this, the NDA Government has taken several initiatives in the past six years for creating an infrastructure of international quality. Our telecommunications have substantially improved. A National Roads Programme for building world-class highways and all weather rural roads has been launched. The unfinished task has now to be completed. New initiatives have to be undertaken to create the environment conducive for a growth in manufacturing.
2. PUT INDIA AT THE CENTRE OF A KNOWLEDGE ECONOMY
Given the country’s capability, skilled manpower and cost effectiveness, the Bharatiya Janata Party will ensure that India becomes the most preferred global destination for business process outsourcing (BPO) and all value added activities ranging from Planning to Design and Research and Development. The momentum has to be sustained with policies aimed at upgrading manpower skills and tuning our educational system accordingly. For this, it is necessary to develop a transparent time bound accreditation process of institutions of higher education. The BJP in Government will ensure that models of public-private partnership for collaboration on Research and Development between Univesities and Industry are developed. Educational Centres of excellence with public/private support to strengthen research and development will be encouraged and developed. Through recent policies such as the Sarva Siksha Abhiyan and expansion of technical education has already strengthened the base of education.
3. INITIATE A PROCESS OF URBAN RENEWAL
There is a need for the revitalization of India’s urban sector. Economic progress inevitably involves migration of people from rural to urban clusters. This necessitates the creation of mega cities. In the first phase several Indian metros must be converted into cities of global standing. In the second phase the next level of cities would also become key global townships. Urban sector reforms would involve implementation of model Municipal Laws by the State Governments, formulation and implementation of a National Policy on slums, rationalization and lowering of stamp duties, a modern Transfer of Property Law, a rational Rent Law, complete scrapping of Urban Land Ceiling Laws in States where they still exist and introduction of user charges for maintenance of sewers and other public utilities through public and private partnership. The Bharatiya Janata Party will press for a national policy on urban transport and the development of the Metro and rapid transport systems in many urban areas.
4. EMPOWER AGRICULTURE
Concerted efforts have enabled India to not only achieve self-sufficiency in food but also to become a net exporter of food. The Government has in the past taken several steps to ensure an improved rural development and help the subsistence farmers of India in trying and achieve quality income and life. Villages are being connected with rural roads. Work in this direction is on at a war footing. Several rural development schemes to ensure water, power, credit have been implemented for the Indian farmers. The challenge for the future is to improve agricultural productivity, concentrate on agro processing activity and connect product of the Indian farmer to the global market.
5. JOB-ORIENTED GROWTH
The economic initiatives launched by this government has generated massive job creation. However, one of the great challenges for the future of Indian economy has to foster an employment growth. Our young democratic profile can be converted into a global activity. Our knowledge resource can be used to create global talent which will serve not only the Indian economy but also respond to global challenges. India will, therefore, need an employment model which creates growth with jobs. Improved productivity will generate efficiencies which will preserve existing jobs and give an opportunity for increased investment which in turn will create more jobs. Sectors such as Roads, Ports, power generation, food processing, tourism, construction, transport, Khadi & Village Industries require to be encouraged to improve job opportunities. The Sampoorna Gram Yojna and the Food for Work have to be utilized for creation of effective employment in the rural sector. The Social Security Scheme for unorganised sector will go a long way to improve the lot to our workers.
6. DESTINATION INDIA
Tourism has the potential to turn into the largest employment generator in the country. India has the advantage of a large sea-coast, mountains, forests, urban metropolis, religious and cultural tourism. An infrastructure for development of tourism needs to be actively promoted.
7. ENLARGE THE COMMUNITY OF STAKEHOLDERS
Financial sector reforms have to be continued and its gains shared equitably. Today, less than 2 per cent of Indians are retail investors. We need to increase the base of the retail investors. Competition in the financial sector has resulted in lower interest rates for several activities. Similar benefits have to be ensured to smaller businesses, farmers and shop-keepers. Insurance sector requires to be encouraged to present affordable products to secure life and properties of businessmen, farmers and traders.
8. ENTENDING THE REACH OF PROSPERITY
Kashmir and North Eastern States have been on the top priority of the NDA Government. Several effective steps have been taken to combat terrorism and restore normalcy in these regions. These gains have to be consolidated to ensure economic prosperity to these States. In the next 5 years it will be important to formulate a master plan and initiate implementation of the same for economic development and creation of job opportunities in the States. Investment should be encouraged as also small and large enterprises, wide-spread training for youths, soft funding facilities and location of national institutions, offices in these areas.
9. MAKING INDIA A GLOBAL ECONOMIC POWER
Today, thanks to our Prime Minister’s vision and the policies pursued by the NDA Government, India is emerging as a military, political and diplomatic power. This needs to be complimented by making India a global economic power. This can be achieved by –