Govt pushing for reservation in pvt sector
Posted online: May 24, 2010 at 1302 hrs
New DelhiPrime Minister Manmohan Singh said the government is working
towards creating an atmosphere where trade and industry come forward
to reserve jobs for the socially underprivileged - a practice in vogue
in the public sector.
Reserving jobs in private sector or affirmative action was part of the
national Common Minimum Programme of UPA-I and it had initiated a
national dialogue with political parties and industry to see how this
can be implemented.
"To take forward the affirmative action, we need to create an
atmosphere so that trade and industry participants help us on this
issue. We are working hard towards that and we acknowledge it needs to
be taken forward fast," he said replying to a question on progress on
The UPA-I had said in May 2004 that it "is very sensitive to the issue
of affirmative action, including reservations, in the private sector.
"It will immediately initiate a national dialogue with all political
parties, industry and other organizations to see how best the private
sector can fulfil the aspirations of scheduled caste and scheduled
At present, the law provides for reservation for Scheduled Castes and
Scheduled Tribes, among others, in public sector jobs, besides quota
Inflation to ease to 5-6% by Dec: PM
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said the government was confident of
bringing down inflation to 5-6 per cent by December, while blaming
high prices on the global developments such as the financial crisis.
"Prices continue to be a matter of concern ... it is affecting the
country's masses ... but I believe by December we can bring it down to
5 to 6 per cent," he said at his national press conference here to
mark the completion of one year UPA-II in office.
Singh said the government has been monitoring inflation and has been
taking measures to check the rising prices, particularly food products
hit by poor monsoons last year.
"But for this (high inflation), international financial crisis and
high prices of petroleum prices in global markets are to blame.
Besides, droughts and floods in some parts of the country last year
also affected our economy as whole," Singh said.
Monsoon accounts for a bulk of rains India receives and nearly 66 per
cent of the country's agriculture sector depends on rains for
High food and fuel prices fuelled overall inflation to over 10 per
cent in February and provisional numbers for April put it at 9.59 per
"As a result of steps we have taken, there are signs of prices showing
a moderating trend," Singh said.
"We are closely monitoring the situation and together with state
governments take all steps to bring down prices and protect the
vulnerable section of our society from the impact of high prices,"
Food inflation, which had shot above 20 per cent in December has since
moderated but is still above 16 per cent.
PM sees 8.5 pct growth 2010/11
India's inflation is showing signs of moderating and the government
expects to achieve a medium term target of 10 percent growth annually,
according to a draft speech by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on
Singh said in the draft speech that he will take more steps to battle
inflation which is currently nearly 10 percent, along with the help of
Our medium term target is to achieve a growth rate of 10 percent per
annum. I am convinced that given our savings and investment rates,
this is an achievable target, the speech draft said. However, its
achievement will require determined efforts to increase investment in
social and economic infrastructure, enhance productivity in
agriculture and give a fresh impetus to the manufacturing sector.
The draft speech comes before a news conference in New Delhi to mark
the first year since the Congress-led coalition government was
reelected to a second term. It is only one of a handful of press
conferences he has given since first coming to power in 2004.
Despite inflation, Singh sees growth in 2010/11 rising to 8.5 percent.
Singh, 77, has disappointed many investors with a slow pace of reforms
that investors say are needed to ensure India can sustain fast
economic growth and compete with the likes of China.
Despite being freed from the shackles of communist party support in
the second term, his government has floundered on inflation, struggled
against a Maoist insurgency, and managed its political allies so badly
its substantial parliamentary majority dwindled. But the government
has also won praise for a sound fiscal policy that has helped protect
India from the worst of the global credit crisis. Growth is still one
of the fastest in the world and there have been some tentative steps
Many investors remain optimistic India eventually will take steps to
open the insurance, banking and retail sectors to overseas players,
and India still attracts many foreign firms.
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