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Modi’s ideas, a rehash of UPA’s vision: Anand Sharma

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Anand Sharma
Anand Sharma

“He (Modi) has just borrowed ideas. Linking India is already happening through the industrial corridors.”

The United Progressive Alliance (UPA) has said that BJP Prime Ministerial candidate Narendra Modi’s economy agenda was basically a “re-hash’’ of the Centre’s vision under implementation.

Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma, on Monday, said Modi’s suggestion on linking India was already happening through the industrial corridors being built and his proposal of increasing the share of manufacturing to 20 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) was much lower than the 25 per cent envisioned in the National Manufacturing Policy.

“He (Modi) has just borrowed ideas. Linking India is already happening through the industrial corridors. Linking rivers is a very old issue under debate,” Sharma said.

Even what is happening in Gujarat (under the NMP and other infrastructure building programmes), which Modi is claiming as his mission, is actually driven by the Centre and is the vision of the UPA Government, he added. The UPA Government has been engaged in creating smart cities and electronic cities all over the country that would push manufacturing and generate millions of jobs, Sharma said. On Modi’s claim that his Government would build IITs and IIMs in all States, the Minister said that under the UPA, eight new IITs, seven new IIMs and four new NIDs were established. “Was there a single IIT, IIM or AIIMs established when the NDA Government was in power?” Sharma said.

The Minister said that Modi had just not demonstrated any new vision.

“This is our vision under implementation. Rest is rehashing,” he said.

Taking Modi on for promising a Price Stabilisation Fund for agriculture commodities, Sharma said that the Gujarat Chief Minister should have implemented it in his State. Sharma said that the Government’s Minimum Support Price (MSP) mechanism was the most significant Price Stabilisation programme that was helping millions of farmers.

Brushing away criticism over lack of agriculture data, Sharma said that all data was available and it is Modi’s lack of understanding that did not allow him to make sense of it.

(This article was published on January 20, 2014)
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