Lok Sabha to discuss White Paper today

 The Lok Sabha on Friday will hold a discussion on the White Paper on Indian economy, which slams the Congress-led UPA government for its policy misadventures during its 10-year rule at the Centre and explains how the Modi government has it right.

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will move the motion — “That this House do consider the White Paper on the Indian Economy and its impact on lives of the people of India” in the Lower House — under Rule 342 24.

The White Paper said, “The UPA government inherited a healthy economy ready for more reforms, but made it non-performing in its 10 years. In 2004, when the UPA government began its term, the economy was growing at 8 per cent (with industry and services sector growth above 7 per cent each and a resuscitating agriculture sector growth above 9 per cent in FY04) amid a benign world economic environment.”

In the overview part of the White Paper document, it said, “In 2014, when we formed the government, the economy was in a fragile state; public finances were in bad shape; there was economic mismanagement and financial indiscipline, and there was widespread corruption. It was a crisis situation.

“Market borrowings were used unproductively during the UPA regime,” said the White Paper.

The paper further said that “the responsibility to mend the economy step by step and to put the governance systems in order was enormous”.

“Our government refrained from bringing out a white paper on the poor state of affairs then. That would have given a negative narrative and shaken the confidence of all, including the investors. The need of the hour was to give hope to the people, to attract investments, both domestic and global, and to build support for the much-needed reforms,” said the White Paper.

“The government believed in ‘nation first’ and not in scoring political points,” it added.

“Now that we have stabilised the economy and set it on a recovery and growth path, it is necessary to place in the public domain the seemingly insurmountable challenges — left behind as a legacy by the UPA government.

“Every challenge of the pre-2014 era was overcome through our economic management and our governance. These have placed the country on a resolute path of sustained high growth. This has been possible through our right policies, true intentions, and appropriate decisions.”

Sitharaman is also expected to reply to the debate in the Lok Sabha on Friday. The Rajya Sabha will take up the discussion most likely on Saturday.

The Finance Minister presented the ‘White Paper’ in the Lok Sabha on Thursday.

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