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Economic slowdown due to liberalisation policy started in 1991: Govindacharya

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RSS ideologue and an ardent advocate of the swadeshi movement, KN Govindacharya on Friday blamed the continuation of liberalisation policy initiated in 1991 for the current economic situation of the country and warned the government of consequences of blindly following the US.

Talking to reporters ahead of the two-day convention of Rashtriya Swabhiman Andolan, founded by him, the former BJP General Secretary (Organisation) said that growth models must be focussed on "eco-centric development".

"The current recession in the economy is due to the policy of liberalisation started in 1991. The manufacturing has gone down, the contribution of agriculture in GDP has reduced," he said.

Govindacharya added that he would not get into political acrobatics and that who is responsible for it, either former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh or Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

He said it was now time for India to adopt the concept of "nature-centric development" as a paradigm instead of consumption-based GDP estimation.

Ecological Sustainability should be the basis of development and the rights and interests of the weakest person in the society should be protected.

"We must set a favourable example for the world by balancing prosperity with Indian traditions and culture. Enrichment of nature is development," he said.

He said that the experience of liberalisation has shown that there has been an increase in rural poverty while employment opportunities have come down drastically.

"The concept of development has been completely distorted in the last 200 years. the hegemony of the state and immoral marketism did not result in the creation of a healthy and interdependent society," he said.

He said land-to-people ratio in India is different compared to other developed countries and if India follows the path of the US then there will be a danger of the country ending up on the lines of Brazil.

"Till 2014 Brazil was also included in the fast-growing economies of the world, after that it fell a victim of severe depression," he warned.

Govindacharya, when he was a BJP general secretary, had taken a two-year sabbatical to study the 'Impact of globalisation in the civilisational context and the alternatives'.

He said India's agricultural sector feeds crores of people and also generates maximum employment.

He said wrong policies of the governments had led to rise in unemployment in the farm sector.

"Due to the import of agricultural products, farmers were not able to get the right price for their crops and the crisis of unemployment was further deepened," he said.

He said the government will have to focus on industries based on agricultural products, lay emphasis on the production of pulses and oilseeds besides food processing.

"This will also solve the unemployment crisis," he said.

Govindacharya's reaction came at a time when the opposition has been targeting the government over an economic slowdown.

He said the need is to "revive the belief that the nation has the resources, the capability, the alternatives to sustain its development.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, September 13 2019. 18:36 IST