Defending the economic reforms and playing the 'inclusive growth' card to the hilt, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Sunday blamed the opposition for spreading misinformation about a slew of policy measures, including foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail, that are meant to help the common man and create more jobs.
This is the second time in the past 43 days-since his address to the nation on September 21--that Singh has explained to the people the hard economic decision dictated by tougher times, even though some of these choices could prove costly for the Congress party, politically.
Combative and determined, Singh told a party rally at the Ramlila Maidan in New Delhi, that tough decisions will be taken in the nation's interest. The PM also spoke of the Congress's resolve to fight corruption but warned that this should not halt the government's decision making process.In a strong defence of its polices, Singh said, "Economic development needs to reach the poor and the common people….We believe that development should enable everyone to get all the basic amenities."
“We need economic reforms to create more jobs... The people are being misled about recent government decisions... We have done a lot of work in the last eight years.”
Explaining the advantages of FDI in retail, Singh said "All will be benefited. Farmers will get the right price for their produce. New employment opportunities will emerge. It is wrong that FDI in retail will affect farmers, such a suggestion is aimed at misleading the country."
Defending the decision to hike fuel prices, he said, "We have taken some steps on prices of petroleum products. We have not increased kerosene prices. This decision is for the betterment of the people."
He also took on the opposition, which has been critical of the reform decisions. "Some people are trying to mislead the public. It is our dream to work towards a strong nation and we will not spare any effort to achieve that."