Striking an optimistic note, Finance Minister P. Chidambaram on Sunday said India can now see the “first green shoots of revival” of economy which has been going through a difficult period and expressed confidence that it will again achieve eight per cent growth.
While setting a target of seven per cent economic growth for the next year, Mr. Chidambaram, who was addressing AICC meeting in Jaipur, noted, “We are going through a difficult period...but we can see the first green shoots of revival.
“There are indications that investments are picking up. There are indications that foreign fund flows in India will continue to be abundant....I am confident that we will again discover 8 percent growth.”
Speaking about the Jaipur Declaration after the Chintan Shivir which was released by the party in the morning, he said it records the core ideology of the party that “Congress must fearlessly, proudly, stoutly hug the middle ground and claim to the sole representative of the vast majority of people”.
The senior party leader said that most people believe that a government should be inclusive and they want to avoid the extreme left or extreme right.
“The vast majority of people occupies the middle ground,” he said, adding that it is only when we dilute this core ideology of Congress and turn to extreme left or extreme right that “we stumble“.
“Today we are the authentic voice and representative of the vast majority of the people of India,” he said hailing the functioning of the government under Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
He said that nobody can deny that more people have been lifted from poverty in last 20 years after the economic reforms came in and “today we have a strong country, strong economy”.
Citing a series of examples, Mr. Chidambaram said that if each one of us is ready to change a bit and make small adjustments, it will lead to huge savings and changes in the country’s fortunes.
He said the small steps will bring a difference in the country. “If each policeman covers an extra mile, women will be safe.
“If each one of us saves a little of diesel and petrol, we can save Rs 5000 crore.... If we do not throw food, we can feed three million people, if each couple prays that their first child will be a girl child, India will be a different country...if we can tweak the MNREGA just a little to create assets, if the rich India and the wealthy share a little of their money... If each one of us works an extra hour,” Mr. Chidambaram said.