Party politics affecting development plans: Tharoor

September 11th, 2010 - 11:12 pm ICT by IANS  

Shashi Tharoor New Delhi Sep 11 (IANS) Contending that party politics is adversely affecting implementation of development plans, former minister of state for external affairs Shashi Tharoor Saturday criticised the Kerala government for being partial with Congress sympathisers.

“In Kerala, if a family is sympathetic towards Congress, they will not get a BPL (below poverty line) card,” Tharoor, the MP from Thiruvananthapuram, said answering questions after delivering a lecture on Millennium Development Goals organised by the UN Millenium Campaign and survey organisation Whypoll.

“Party politics is affecting development. If I get central allocations for something, the Kerala government is not ready to spend it,” he said.

Tharoor, however, quickly added: “I hope we don’t do it when we are in power.”

Stating that non-implementation of programmes was one of the biggest problems in achieving the development goals, Tharoor blamed the federal structure and party politics for this.

“As Rajiv Gandhi said, the fence is eating the crop,” Tharoor said.

In his lecture, he said that the poverty situation has worsened due to the global economic crisis and rising food and fuel prices.

Tharoor, who has also served as a UN Undersecretary General, stressed that developed countries needed to make committed efforts for giving aid and ensuring the aid effectiveness.

“The need is not for more aid, but to see that the aid is well directed and effective,” he said.

The eight millennium development goals are eradicating extreme poverty and hunger, achieving universal primary education, promoting gender equality and empowering women, reducing child mortality, improving maternal health, combating HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases, ensuring environmental sustainability and developing a global partnership for development.

According to UN reports, while India has done well in fields of school education, providing drinking water, reducing poverty and conserving environment, focus is needed on states like Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Orissa, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand which still lag behind.

According to Millennium Development Goals - India Country Report 2009, these states which are the most populous states, are unlikely to achieve this target if they go like this. The proportion of poor in these states is currently at 64 percent of the country’s poor and this is likely to increase to 71 percent by 2015. The number of poor in 2015 is likely to be 279 million at the all-India level.

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