oppn parties Low Benchmarks and Easy Satisfaction Lead to Gloating

News Snippets

  • Crude prices fall sharply as Saudi Arabia assures normal production in a few weeks. Prices fall by 5.4% to $65.30 per barrel
  • Sensex tumbles 700 points over fears that rising crude prices will deal a body blow to the tottering Indian economy
  • As Rajeev Kumar fails to appear before the CBI despite several notices, the agency forms a special team to locate and apprehend him
  • S Jaishankar says Pakistan is not a normal neighbour and its behaviour is a "set of aberrations"
  • External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar says PoK in Indian territory and the country hopes to have physical jurisdiction over it one day
  • Barasat Sessions court near Kolkata rejects Rajeev Kumar anticipatory bail application citing lack of jurisdiction as the reason
  • PM Modi celebrates his birthday with Narmada aarti and later has lunch with his mother.
  • All 6 Bahujan Samaj Party MLAs merge with the Congress in Rajasthan
  • Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee to meet PM Modi on Wednesday, state issues on the agenda
  • Pakistan to open Kartarpur corridor on Nov 9
  • Rajeev Kumar, ex-police commissioner of Kolkata and wanted for questioning in the Sarada scam does not appear before the CBI despite the state administration requesting him to do so
  • Supreme Court asks the Centre to restore normalcy in J&K but keeping national interest in mind
  • As Trump accepts the invitation to attend a programme in Houston with PM Modi, India rushes to settle trade issues with US
  • After drone attack on Aramco's Suadi Arabia facility, oil prices jump 19% in intra-day trading causing worries for India
  • Imran Khan raises nuclear war bogey again, says if Pakistan loses a conventional war, it might fight till the end with its nuclear arsenal
Sunni Wakf Board and Nirvani Akhara write to the Supreme Court for a negotiated settlement to the Ayodhya dispute
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Low Benchmarks and Easy Satisfaction Lead to Gloating

By Sunil Garodia

About the Author

Sunil Garodia Editor-in-Chief of indiacommentary.com. Current Affairs analyst and political commentator. Writes for a number of publications.
When people were gloating over Indian economy’s relatively better performance in times of global depression and how it had managed to insulate itself to a small degree from the ups and downs of the global economies, that hard taskmaster, RBI governor Raghuram Rajan, said that India was like a “one-eyed king” in a land of blinds. To anyone familiar with this saying, it was a perfectly apt description of the situation. But finance minister Arun Jaitley and commerce minister Nirmala Sitharaman took umbrage at Rajan’s remark. They said it failed to recognize the inherent strengths of Indian economy.

There are people who get satisfied with very low benchmarks. Raghuram Rajan is not one of them and obviously Jaitley and Sitharaman are. When compared to other economies, the Indian economy has without doubt done well in the last year. Most of the credit goes to the prudent policies of the NDA government and the strict monitoring of the situation by the RBI. But why compare to others? We should judge the performance not by comparing it with how others have fared but by comparing it to what we could have achieved but failed to do. Indian economy has the inherent strength to achieve a growth of 9 to 10% every year. If we manage just 7% and gloat, we are definitely being one-eyed kings in a land of blinds.

Jaitley and Sitharaman should have higher benchmarks that are independent of what is happening in other economies. We did well in the first half of 1990’s when the reforms process was in full swing. This government has failed to undertake any major structural reform. It has put in place a lot of things that can lead to such reforms but has shied away from giving the economy that one big push it needs to reinvigorate it. Of course it is true that some of its big measures, like the GST, have been blocked by an irresponsible opposition. But gloating over small achievements will make it push reforms on the backburner. India should aim for 10%, or even higher, growth. It has the capacity but its political class lacks the necessary vision despite talks of acche din.