Industry leaders on Monday made public that they were looking forward to working with the new government that would assume office after the Lok Sabha elections.
Talking to reporters, senior Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) leaders jointly maintained that it would not be possible for them to anticipate any kind of political instability after the elections and evaded evaluation of Rahul Gandhi or Narendra Modi or Arvind Kejriwal.
FICCI President Sidharth Birla and his predecessors Y. K. Modi, Harshpati Singhania and R. V. Kanoria maintained that they looked only at the government of the day, and would look to the freshly elected government irrespective of which party headed it.
There was near unanimity among the parties on various issues, they said. What industry hoped for was clarity of policy and its implementation, they added.
Asked for their comments on the economic agenda of Mr. Modi and Mr. Gandhi, they said neither of them had enunciated their policy as such but hoped any government assuming office after the elections would implement the agenda put forward by Mr. Gandhi at a function of the FICCI. They, however, regretted the big gap that existed between what the UPA government was doing from the agenda spelt out by Mr. Gandhi.
Similarly, they declined to comment on the emergence of AAP, and said they would look to working with the new government. They stressed that all parties worked with intention of doing good for the country.
While stressing that the present government could still be expected to put in good work, the FICCI leaders declined to judge how Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had performed during his two tenures.
The Prime Minister’s statement that history would be kind in judging his contribution, Mr. Birla maintained, was said in a particular context. And, hence, he would not comment on that. “There is no need to start judging the PM. May be when he retires.”
Mr. Modi stressed that he (Mr. Manmohan Singh) was not history as yet. There were six months more to go during which he could still do wonders for the country, he pointed out.
Asked to comment on the Delhi High Court ordering a CAG audit into the functioning of telecom operators, Mr. Birla said he could not comment on a judicial pronouncement.
However, regarding the Delhi government’s order for CAG probe into some power firms, Mr. Birla said the CAG was answerable to Parliament regarding government-owned business. CAG was not constituted to interfere in the account books of private companies, he pointed out.