Slamming Trinamool Congress, Union Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad on Sunday said steps such as allowing FDI in retail sector, hiking diesel prices and limiting cap on domestic LPG could have been taken earlier if there was no pressure from parties like the one headed by Mamata Banerjee.

Ruling out any threat to the UPA government following withdrawal of support by TMC, the senior Congress leader said, “Our government has support of over 300 MPs in the Lok Sabha, including members from parties giving inside and outside support.”

For a simple majority, government needs the support of at least 273 MPs in a House of 545.

Mr. Azad was talking to reporters here on the sidelines of a function to pay tributes to former King of Jammu and Kashmir Maharaj Hari Singh on its 117th birth anniversary at Dogra Chowk area of the city.

Stoutly defending the decisions, he said every country needed to take strong steps for the betterment of its economy. “This strong step will be better for the country,” he said.

Mr. Azad said the Prime Minister has already clarified that if these steps were not taken, the country would have faced 1991 like situation when gold had to be mortgaged to tide over economic crisis.

“India has managed well on the economic front despite global economy facing recession during the past few years,” he said.

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