New Delhi, Dec 20: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh might have launched economic reforms 20 years ago but Congress leader and ‘in-house' critic Mani Shankar Aiyar today said the liberalisation process in the country shifted the focus from alleviation of poverty to the promotion of prosperity.
Aiyar, who calls India an “underdeveloped” country, said he was far more concerned with transforming socialism rather than transforming capitalism.
“Ours had been a sound socialist country till economic liberalisation began in 1991. But this shifted focus from alleviation of poverty to promotion of prosperity,” he said at the release of Planning Commission member Arun Maira's book ‘Transforming Capitalism' here.
“Since economic liberalisation the focus remained on the economic reforms, while the efforts on governance reforms has been pathetic and as a result while the government projects the growth rate at 8 per cent, the rate of poverty alleviation is averaged at 0.8 per cent by the Planning Commission,” the Rajya Sabha MP said.
Maira said the time has come to “discuss, debate and deliberate” and discover a new philosophy of development and release sense of inclusive growth.
He noted that like democracy, business needs to be for the people, by the people and of the people, where the profit is not driven away by share-holders.
“Though the virtue of capitalism was proved with the demise of Soviet Union, but now the time has come to discover a new philosophy of development and examine theories-in-use to ensure inclusive growth,” Maira said.