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Modi to woo financial elite next week

Closed-door meet with investors and their lenders, from here and abroad, for selling BJP's economy vision

Narendra Modi
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If you’re an investment banker and don’t figure on the list of invitees, you might as well curl up and die. On February 27 in New Delhi, the Bharatiya Janata Party’s prime ministerial candidate, , will address a meeting of investors, big infrastructure companies and banks, Indian and foreign, where he will spell out his vision for the economy and industry.

It will be a ‘by invitation’ event, to engage with financial decision makers, many of whom move trillions of dollars around the world, especially in emerging markets.

It has been structured as a set of two rounds of discussion. One is on infrastructure and the other on India’s macro economic needs. Titled, ‘New paradigms for Indian growth’, the meeting has been set up by the India Foundation, the hottest new kid on the think tank block.

The brainchild of former Intelligence Bureau director, Ajit Doval, the organisation is quietly doing all the backroom thinking on economy and security-related issues to prepare policy stances for the .

The meeting is aimed at both informing and reassuring the investment community about Modi’s economic ideas and distancing a possible prospective government from some aspects of the BJP’s economic thinking that the audience and those they represent find alarming. Such as interfering with the autonomy of the top leadership of the Reserve Bank of India.

Former Union minister for power and water resources Suresh Prabhu will chair the session on infrastructure. Economist Bibek Debroy will steer the discussion on India’s macro economic challeges.

But billed as the star of the show will, of course, be Narendra Modi, who will deliver the concluding address.

“We realised he needs to spell out his ideas and thought this was a good way to do it,” said one of the organisers of the conference.

Among the 250 key financial market players and from 35 countries which have been invited are Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan, Nomura and CLSA. A week ahead of the event, invitation lists have been frozen due to the scramble to attend. “It is absolutely by invitation and will go on from 2 pm to 7 pm. Mr Modi will take a few questions,” said an organiser.

Also associated with the conference is Jayant Sinha, himself a former investment banker and who is now looking at a career in politics. Sinha has an illustrious father, former Finance Minister .

The meeting will be a signpost for what to expect on economic policy if a BJP-led government comes to power.

DISCUSSING MODINOMICS

* The meeting is aimed at both informing and reassuring the investment community about Modi’s economic ideas

* The meet, to be held in New Delhhi on February 27, has been structured as a set of two rounds of discussion. One is on infrastructure and the other on India’s macro economic needs

* Among the 250 key financial market players and investment bankers from 35 countries which have been invited are Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan, Nomura and CLSA

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