Chhattisgarh: Future lies in strengthening liberal democracy in India, says ex RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan – Times of India

RAIPUR: Former RBI governor Raghuram Rajan on Saturday said that India doesn’t need an authoritarian government to grow but our future lies in strengthening our liberal democracy and its institutions, rather than weakening them.
Speaking at the national conclave of All India Professional Congress (AIPC) in Raipur, Raghuram Rajan said, “I argue that the recent underperformance of the country in terms of economic growth seems to indicate that the path we are going on, needs rethinking.”
“There’s a feeling among some quarters in India today that democracy holds back Indian group and India needs strong, even authoritarian leadership with few checks and balance on it to grow and we seem to be drifting in some direction. I believe this argument is totally wrong and based on an outdated model of development that emphasizes on goods and capital, not people and ideas,” Rajan said.
He urged, “We must confront and defeat majoritarian and authoritarianism because any attempt to make second class citizens of large minority will divide the country and create internal resentment. In this age of geopolitical turmoil, it will also weaken us and make us vulnerable to foreign meddling. We only have to look south to Srilanka, to see the consequences when a country’s politicians try to deflect from the inability to create jobs by attacking a minority.”
Key measure of underperformance is our inability to create the good jobs that our youth need. “Think of the protest that was triggered by the government recently announced Agneepath scheme, this is suggestive of how hungry our youths are for jobs. Recently, the nation saw 12.5 million applicants for 35000 railway jobs, it’s also particularly worrisome when India has a scarcity of jobs when so many women are not working outside the house. Think how much richer India would be as a country and how much less frustrated our youth would be if there were good jobs for all. So, I would like to question, where has India gone wrong,” Rajan said.
Speaking on the occasion, AIPC chairman and Congress MP Shashi Tharoor said the Congress party always believed in bringing everyone together with the progress of every section of the society.
“Congress believes in values of an inclusive media that looks beyond caste, creed, religion and language and sees all as one. It is also about an India where we want to look beyond the distinction of rich and poor, Dalits and Brahmins while some politicians would like to focus upon these issues in a vid to polarize electorates. Believing in liberalization of economy, Congress was always clear about its policy. Many be rich gets richer but poor should get the benefits with the revenues that come to government from liberalized economy,” Tharoor said.
He said that Chhattisgarh is an example of integrity, confidence, and development that we as a Congress party showcase to people, to give us another chance in the Centre.
“Bhupesh Baghel ji through the Nyay Yojana is not only giving support to farmers but also extending the system to a weaker sections of the society to make them participate in the adventure of progress and development of India,” Tharoor said.

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