India's economic downturn is "temporary" and the upturn will begin from October as the country's economy and business are resilient enough to adapt to the changing times of global meltdown, said Home Minister P Chidamabaram on Tuesday.
"India stood out as a shining example of resilient economy and we owe this to the resilience of the Indian businesses and Indian economy, which quickly adjusted to the changing times. This (meltdown) is a temporary phase," said Chidambaram while giving away the annual National Tourism Awards.
"By the beginning of 2009-2010 and beginning October 2009, we will find an upturn in economy," he added.
Addressing trade and travel representatives, he said there has been a "degree of uncertainty" in their minds, as he urged them to take a "balanced view of things".
He said every day of 2008 brought bad news for the developing countries facing the global meltdown, but India saw a growth rate of 7.1 per cent due to domestic demand.
"In no other country, I have seen businessmen adjusting so rapidly and that is why we were able to hold our head high. I am sure this quality will steer the industry in 2009. Insha Allah, the growth rate of Indian economy will go over 7 per cent," the minister said.
The former finance minister also advised companies to cut prices to weather the downturn.
"They should not be hesitant in cutting prices. It is more important to remain in business and retain clientele. Cutting prices is also better than losing loyal employees and business. Cut prices and the results would be visible."
Chidambaram said India is an attractive destination and no country in the world offers so much variety. While in 2008 about 5.37 million tourists visited the country, it was 5.07 million in 2007.
Among those awarded were the Taj and Oberoi hotels for demonstrating courage in safeguarding the lives of the guests during the Nov 26 terror attack last year.
Arunachal Pradesh received the award for development of tourism infrastructure in the state while both Rajasthan and Sikkim got the award for offering various tourism related programmes.