Mangaluru: A talk on ‘Commerce Policy for Future India’ by the Minister of State for Commerce & Industry Nirmala Sitharaman was held at Sanghanikethan, Mannaguda here on January 3.
The programme began with an invocation. The programme was inaugurated by Nirmala Sitharaman along with Pradeep Pai (founder, Hangyo), N Vishal Hegde (pro chancellor, NITTE), AK Shamila Shenoy and Konkodi Padmanabha (President, Campco).
Addressing the gathering Nirmala said, “The spirit of commerce policy is already in Mangaluru. I have had a continuous and unbroken link with this region from my childhood. Every time I come to this region, every time I come to a gathering it’s like a ‘ganesh vandhana’. The kind of inspiration that my family as derived from close association with T A Pai has told a lot of stories for us to get motivated. And today, at a very personal level, I feel the policy that I am going to be talking about has definitely a lot in common with it. At a time when there was a regulatory environment, a very very centrally commanded economy, this region showed its entrepreneur skills. Many units have been established here. Mangaluru and the areas surrounding it have shown that their entrepreneurial skills can never be stifled with, that they will never be controlled. And it is that entrepreneurial leadership that the Prime Minister today wants to give a message by saying ‘Look we believe in you, we trust in you and if there have been days when you felt suffocated because of regulations and regulations leading to petty corruption, we are here to remove each one of those obstacles to make you flourish back again with your original spirit. That is the essence of the Commerce Policy which the Prime Minister has put forth.”
“We are looking at various ways of engaging with the state governments without discrimination. We need entire team India to work on this and that includes not just the central government but also the state governments, the industry/stakeholder. All of us together will draft the policy so that the vision that all of us have to fully utilise the capacity, to produce for India, to make for India and any other market anywhere can come true.
“Make in India is not just another scheme through which we are giving some money. It also talks about the mindset, it also talks about the entrepreneurial skill that we have, the spirit that this country always had.”
“Just growth without having an impact on job creation, without sharing the benefits of the growth itself to the hands of the people in need of jobs will not generate demand in the market. The last few years we have been told by the government that we are growing wonderfully at 5%, 6% sometimes indisputably at 8%, 9% and so on. Even if we assume that every growth figure which was given to me was true, nobody could deny that that growth was not being reflected in terms of jobs. Infact, many people had been sent out of jobs. This is continuing even today to an extent because of those policies whose residue are still affecting the mindset of investors.”
She explained the need for a change in the planning commission which “was probably more fit to the socialist era but not so fit for today’s India.” She said that Mammohan Singh himself felt that the time to change the planning commission was long overdue. She also explained how in recent times commerce has been the driving force for politics. “Government economics override government politics.”
A Q&A session was held after the talk. People asked various questions regarding the problems faced by areca farmers, price fluctuations of cement, etc.
Prior to the talk, Nirmala Sitharaman interacted with the mediapersons at the BJP office.
Former MLC Monappa Bhandary and other BJP leaders were also present. Walter D’Souza and Padmanabh Konkodi submitted the memorandum to the minister on the occasion.