Special Correspondent

‘Rising Sensex worrying at times’

‘No reason to change course’

‘Speculators taking advantage’

NEW DELHI: Indicating that everything was under control, Finance Minister P. Chidambaram on Friday said that he would continue to push reforms in his next budget, something that he had done during the presentation of the last four budgets.

“I expect to present the budget. It will be a budget which will continue the efforts we made in the last four budgets,” the Finance Minister said while speaking at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit here.

Mr. Chidambaram’s comments came close on the heels of the assertion by UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh that the UPA Government at the Centre would last its full term. “There is no reason to change course. If we have delivered low growth, there could be reason to change course. But on an average we have delivered 8.6 per cent growth rate,” he added.

Pointing out that most pessimistic economic growth projection for this year was 8.5 per cent, he said he saw no any reason for changing course.

“On the contrary, we must remain on the course and I will remain on the course,” he remarked.

Mr. Chidambaram also expressed surprise over the steep rise in stock market barometer Sensex. “The steep rise in Sensex sometimes surprises me, sometimes worries me. I do not think fundamentals of economy change on day-to-day basis. Sensex is driven by corpus inflow of funds,” he said.

Referring to speculators’ playing in the market, he said: “to an extent speculators are taking advantage of Sensex. I think things will cool down. Sensex is an index of 30 stocks and it is a number. We do not invest our future in Sensex,” he stated.