Stressing that the country was passing through its deepest economic crisis since Independence, BJP president Rajnath Singh said India needed a realist Prime Minister rather than an economist like Manmohan Singh. Advocating the need for an alternate economic policy, Mr. Singh, said India’s success story was not over, rather it was now awaiting the BJP. The Prime Minister is on the silent mode and is thinking what to do. He is a big economist. Mr. [Atal Bihari] Vajpayee was not an economist but a realist. You compare the economy during the NDA [National Democratic Alliance] and the UPA [United Progressive Alliance] regimes. When the BJP was in power, the current account was in surplus. After the UPA came to power in 2004, the Rupee went to the ventilator. The trade deficit is rising so naturally the current account deficit is growing,” Mr. Singh said.

Delivering a talk on ‘Outlook for a balanced economic growth’, organised by the Merchant Chamber of Commerce and the Indian Chamber of Commerce, he said this government was letting others take off. “The dollar is now escalating,” he noted

He said that in the five years that his party was in power at the Centre, over six crore job opportunities were created. As against that, between 2004 and 2009, only 27 lakh job opportunities were created.

Mr. Singh said the BJP was not against liberalisation or globalisation but it felt that India needed to and could retain its autonomy even after globalising its economy. “The time has come to adopt India’s own alternate economic model rather than follow a Western economic model,” he said.

‘Disrespect to PM is disrespect to country’

The Prime Minister does not belong to any one political party but to the entire country and any disrespect shown to him is tantamount to disrespect to the country, Mr. Singh said. Asked to comment on Rahul Gandhi’s outburst on the proposed ordinance to protect convicted lawmakers, Mr. Singh said, “The Prime Minister does not belong to any one political party but to the entire country and disrespect, discourtesy shown to him is shown to the entire country.”

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