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Adopt inclusive approach for a better economy: APSCHE chief

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Special Correspondent

Delivery system needs to be streamlined, he says

Two-day UGC seminar held on 60 years of India

Young people should be trained well, says the economist

VISAKHAPATNAM: Noted economist and Chairman of the Andhra Pradesh State Council for Higher Education (APSCHE) K.C. Reddy has called for making efforts towards a sustainable, participatory and equitable economy.

Delivering the keynote address at the two-day UGC-National seminar on `60 years of India’s development experience’ which he inaugurated at the School of Economics in Andhra University on Thursday, he observed that there was marked development in literacy level, life expectancy and other areas. The economic growth rate also increased from 3.5 in the 1960s and 70s to 5.5 in 1980s to 5.8 in 90s, and to six per cent in 2003.

“The average of X Plan is put at more than eight per cent and in 2006-07, the growth rate is 9.3 per cent. In the next 10 years, the expected growth rate is nine per cent and in next 50 years, six per cent. If it grows at six per cent, India will be among the largest economies in the world behind China and the US,” he stated.

However, Prof. Reddy wondered whether the nine per cent growth was sustainable, participatory and equitable. The delivery system of quality of governance for equitable economy needed to be streamlined as people expected quality life, he opined. “In IX Plan, Rs.40,000 crores was spent towards anti-poverty schemes which should have ensured that every family got Rs.8,000 a month and able to buy three kg. of rice a day,” which, however, did not happen. But, on the employment sustainability, India witnessed a commendable 35 per cent investment of savings and the corporate investments increased up to 30 per cent. However, there was need to strengthen infrastructure and ensure that the corporate investment grew, he felt.

Unemployment

Noting that unemployment was growing, he said it was because women and old people were also working due to higher life expectation. A major advantage of India was that it had a very young population which should be trained to develop right kind of skills to participate in economic activity through inclusive approach with focus on participation in economic, social and political activity.

Though there were key areas like agriculture which were ignored and on the other side there were still 300 million people below the poverty line, it had to be admitted that India did make substantial progress, he pointed out.

Vice-Chancellor of Andhra University L. Venugopal Reddy chaired the session. Principal of AU College of Arts and Commerce J.V. Prabhakara Rao spoke. Earlier, cooridinator of the department of Economics, K. Sriramamurthy, welcomed the participants while Prof. Sudarsana Rao proposed a vote of thanks.


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