From News Papers

Growth is on track: MODI

Armed with more than two dozens of slides and data, PM Modi in a combative speech slammed his government’s critics and made the case that growth is on track, policymaking is robust and economic fundamentals are strong. In a highly significant observation, addressing concerns of the business community, the PM said, “Businessmen and traders now returning to mainstream may be worried that old records will be checked. We will not allow that to happen… I welcome you now, leave the old things behind and do not be worried. I am with you in the future.” The PM said the union government “will take all required steps to improve growth”, adding “our steps will put country in a new league of development.”
— (ECONOMIC TIMES)

EC CAN HOLD SIMULTANEOUS ASSEMBLY-LOK SABHA POLLS

After Prime Minister Narendra Modi had given the proposal to holding state assembly and Lok Sabha polls together to save money and time, the Election Commission of India after thorough examination now planning to hold assembly and Lok Sabha polls simultaneously after September next year. Election commissioner sources said this move could cut poll costs by hundreds of crores. Election Commissioner O P Rawat said, “We told the government what we have and what we need. We told the government about the electronic voting machines (EVMs) and other related things that we need and how much money will be required for the same,” and added that the commission would require 40 lakh election-related equipments.
— (TIMES OF INDIA)

INFRASTRUCTURE OUTPUT SHOWS IMPRESSIVE GROWTH

In a sign that could be seen as economic revival, India’s annual infrastructure output grew at its fastest pace in five months in August, driven by higher coal and electricity production, government data showed on 03 October, 2017. The output grew 4.9 per cent in August compared with a revised 2.6 per cent year-on-year growth in July. During April-August, the annual output growth was 3 per cent, data showed. Eight infrastructure sectors include coal, crude oil, natural gas, refinery products, electricity, steel, cement, and fertilizer, accounting for about 40 per cent weight in index of industrial production. Electricity production grew 10.3 per cent in August from a year ago, while coal output grew 15.3 per cent.
— (ECONOMIC TIMES)

EXCISE DUTY ON PETROL AND DIESEL SLASHED

The government on Oct 3, 2017 slashed the excise duty on petrol and diesel by Rs 2 per litre, effective from 4 October, in a bid to boost slowing economy and dispel the Reserve Bank of India’s worries about inflationary pressures that are holding back interest rate cuts. “This decision has been taken by the government in order to cushion the impact of rising international prices of crude petroleum oil and petrol and diesel on retail sale prices of petrol and diesel as well as to protect the interest of common man,” the Finance Ministry said, while announcing the duty cut.
— (TIMES OF INDIA)

SWACHH BHARAT MISSION NEEDS POPULAR SUPPORT TO SUCCEED

Seeking popular participation to make the Swachh Bharat campaign a success, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said even a 1,000 Gandhis and a lakh Modis and all the CMs will not succeed unless the mission is adopted by India’s 125 crore population. “Just because there are difficulties, should we let it be?” he asked and reiterated his government’s resolve to take the Swachh Bharat Mission forward. He asked his critics not to “politicize and make fun” of the cleanliness initiative. He said people’s participation in the initiative will ensure the mission is successful despite skepticism in some quarters. “You have thousands of topics to criticise Modi. I give you something every day, utilize them. But don’t make fun or politicize an issue which is essential to bring change in our society,” Modi said at an event to mark the third anniversary of the government’s flagship mission.
— (TIMES OF INDIA)