Towards Inclusive Growth

India has an impressive growth  rate averaging more than 7 % over the last  decade , second only to China among the developing nations. As we enter the next decade of the 21st century , the central government  has plans to improve the growth rate to near 10 %  but with a significant rider – Inclusive growth  covering all segments  – urban , rural as well as minorities and the under privileged .  It is a very bold policy initiative and needs to be welcomed by all . We hope that the government machinery is tuned to address this enormous task  and work towards achieving  food , energy and infrastructure  sufficiency  in a planned and phased manner  to cover all the diverse  stake holders in a creative manner.

During the last decade , the country has made great strides  in food production , availability of  multiple energy  options  and improving connectivity  both physical and telecommunication to many remote parts of the country . Rural electrification  ,  availability of funds through various micro finance vehicles , improved health care at primary levels and greater literacy rates through various extension programs  and a guaranteed employment for 100 days in a year have all contributed to the “Inclusive growth” focus .  We still have a long way to go  in eradicating poverty  and bonded labor completely  and there are pockets still considered vulnerable for economic exploitation by vested interests  in the country.

Inclusive Growth should also address environment issues like deforestation , depletion of ocean resources  ,  the receding water table in many urban areas  and the availability of potable water to all . The planners should therefore work on an integrated growth model to operationalise the Inclusive Growth and make it a reality in the next decade.

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