Corrective steps being taken to propel economic growth: Transport Minister Gadkari

New Delhi(PTI): In an apparent dig at the previous UPA regime, Union Road and Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari today said lack of appropriate policies forced India’s development to take a backseat but now corrective measures are on to propel economic growth.

“India lacked appropriate policies at appropriate time…It lacked vision…Unanimity is needed on the agenda of development and all political parties should join hands on this. The government has initiated a slew of steps to take the economy forward,” Gadkari said on the launch of a book “Resurgent India: Ideas and Priorities here at India Islamic Centre.

He said wrong policies had resulted in the crisis faced by the agrarians and advocated, “We have to diversify agriculture to energy and power sectors…Energy crop is needed and farmers contribution could be enormous in reducing huge Rs 8 lakh crore import bills on crude and oil.” Citing an example of such wrong policies, he said had India entered into a pact with Iran for Chahbahar port which gives it sea-land access route to Afghanistan bypassing Pakistan, there would have been huge dcline in urea prices.

Terming poverty, hunger and disease as India’s biggest problem he said farmers were driven to suicides and time has come to seriously introspect as to what policies were correct for a nation like India.

“Innovation, entrepreneurship, technology and knowledge can change India’s fate,” he said adding, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is working in this direction.

Gadkari said the book co-authored by economists Rajiv Kumar and Ramgopal Agarwala with former CII president Rajesh Shah has outlined growth strategies for various sectors including agricultur, infrastructure and health.