As economy shatters, Indian rupee plunges, PM Manmohan Singh tells Indians to shun their golden cruise

Aug 30 2013, 21:59 IST
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Prime Minister Manmohan Singh assures the Rajya Sabha that the government is  working hard to arrest the rupee slide. (PTI) Prime Minister Manmohan Singh assures the Rajya Sabha that the government is working hard to arrest the rupee slide. (PTI)
SummaryPM says working hard to get economy to work, but citizens must slash lifestyle, fund security spends.

Notwithstanding concerns over sliding Indian rupee, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today ruled out reversal of reforms or resorting to capital controls to rescue the currency which he said fell on account of domestic as well as global factors.

PM Manmohan Singh in Lok Sabha: Read full speech

Making a statement on the state of the economy in Parliament amid concerns over rapid depreciation of rupee, Singh said the country has to be ready for short-term shocks but the government will ensure that the fundamentals of economy remain strong.

"We are faced with challenges but we have the capacity to deal with them,", he said, while seeking support of all political parties in this situation.

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Breaking his silence on the decline of rupee, he said there "may be short term shocks to our economy and we need to face them. That is the reality of the globalised economy, whose benefits we have reaped".

There is no question of reversing the policies just because there is some turbulence in capital and currency markets, he said, adding the "sudden decline in exchange rate is certainly a shock, but we will address this through other measures, not through capital controls or by reversing reforms".

Not satisfied with the Prime Minister's statement, the Opposition parties including BJP, AIADMK, Left and SAD staged a walk out in the Lok Sabha.

Pitching for more reforms, the Prime Minister said easy reforms of the past have been done but the difficult ones remain.

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"We have the more difficult reforms to do such as reduction of subsidies, insurance and pension sector reforms, eliminating bureaucratic red tape and implementing Goods and Services Tax," he said.

"These are not low hanging fruit and need political consensus... We need to forge consensus on such vital issues. I urge political parties to work towards this end and to join in the government's efforts to put the economy back on the path of stable and sustainable growth," Singh said.

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