Sonia Gandhi, Manmohan Singh confident about India minimising global meltdown impact

November 21st, 2008 - 2:04 pm ICT by ANI  

Manmohan Singh

New Delhi, Nov.21 (ANI): The Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, and the Chairperson of the ruling United Progressive Alliance (UPA), Sonia Gandhi, on Friday said that India had the capability to minimise the negative impact of the global financial meltdown.
Addressing participants at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit here this morning, both described the global economic crisis as a major issue, but added that its impact could be contained to allow new opportunities to surface.
“The Indian economy has weathered more severe economic meltdown during 1991 and later during the Asian currency crisis. We have the ability to sustain a growth rate of about eight per cent. And we will do so,” Dr. Singh said, adding that India had the “resources and the wisdom to grapple and deal” with the crisis.
Singh said all instruments of public policy monetary, fiscal, public investment and exchange rate “will be deployed” to tackle it.
Observing that the global economy was passing through a “deep crisis”, the economist-turned-politician said: “We cannot pretend that we are not affected by it. The crisis was not made in our country but elsewhere. … Due to the interdependency (of the world economies), we are in the same boat.”
He also said that there was a need for a global safety net, and this had been conveyed by New Delhi at the recent Group of Twenty (G-20) leaders meeting in Washington.
Replying to another question, Dr. Singh said cooperative pluralism and respect for diversity was the basis of democracy in India and “competitive politics must not be allowed to divide the people on the basis of religion, caste or region.”
The Prime Minister said that his ambition for the 21st century was a fully educated and empowered India.
“The light of knowledge should touch every child,” Singh said as he recalled his rise from a “dusty village” in Punjab to the top office only because of education.
“My dream for myself was realised in my own lifetime,” he added. (ANI)

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