Millennium Post

India destined to be major powerhouse of global economy: Manmohan

India destined to be major powerhouse of global economy: Manmohan

New Delhi: Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Tuesday said that India is destined to be a major powerhouse of the global economy despite difficulty and hurdles.

Taking a dig at his critics for calling him a silent prime minister, Singh said he was never afraid of talking to the media and rather interacted with the press very regularly.

He also revealed that he was not only an "accidental prime minister" but also an "accidental finance minister" of the country as the post was denied by I G Patel, the former RBI Governor and his immediate predecessor in the RBI.

Singh was made the finance minister in 1991 by the then Prime Minister P V Narasimha Rao, who is credited for changing the course of the Indian economy and bringing in market liberalisation.

The former prime minister said that no government could change the course of the economy and broadly followed the path set by him as a finance minister in the Narasimha Rao-led government.

Speaking at the launch of his 6 volume book series called 'Changing India', Singh said "despite all the hiccups and hurdles, I have no doubt that India will get its action right. Despite the difficulty that may be on the horizon, this country is destined to be a major powerhouse of the global economy."

Singh remembered his first Budget speech when he quoted Victor Hugo as said "no power on earth can stop an idea whose time has come".

"I suggest to this august House that the emergence of India as a major economic power in the world happens to be one such idea. Let the whole world hear it loud and clear. India is now wide awake. We shall prevail. We shall overcome," he quoted himself from his Budget speech of 1991.

"Therefore, I have always believed at a time when India was at a very serious crisis that we will overcome and we will prevail and with determination we converted the crisis of 1991 into a great opportunity to reform the economy. The results of that for everyone to see," he said referring to India's journey since then. There have been several changes of the government but the broad thrust of the economic policy has not changed in the last 25 years, he said adding that as a result, India is one of the few countries witnessing an average growth rate of 6.7 per cent to 7 per cent for the past 25 years.

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