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Some people don't want India to catch up with China: Chidamabaram

July 22, 2008 12:05 IST
Last Updated: July 22, 2008 13:28 IST


Virtually slamming the Left parties, Finance Minister P Chidambaram on Tuesday alleged, "Some people do not want India to catch up with China".

"There are some people in the country who do not want India to catch up with China...They do not want India to be ahead of China," Chidambaram said in the Lok Sabha while defending the India-United States nuclear agreement.

The Finance Minister was provoked by members of the Left parties when they questioned him as to why he was comparing India with China.

                                                                 Coverage: An Alliance in Crisis

Amidst noisy scenes created by the Left parties, Chidambaram said, "Some people want China to become an economic super power."

Chidambaram said he wants India to emulate China without envying the neighbouring country. "I have no hesitation in saying that I do not want to envy China...I want to emulate China...I want India to become an economic power and economic super power".

He said a country as large as India should be compared with China. "When we talk about India, we should talk about countries which are as large and as complex as India and that is China...We cannot talk about countries which are smaller than India and poorer than India."

The Finance Minister said China, which draws only two per cent of its energy requirements from the nuclear sources, has mega plans to augment its atomic reactors. By 2020, China wants to build 50,000 MW capacity for nuclear energy and it plans to take it further to 1,20,000-1,60,000 MW by 2030.

Chidambaram claimed the United Progress Alliance government has only taken the  'dialogue' of the previous National Democratic Alliance government further.

"Do we want to come out of nuclear isolation," the Finance Minister asked the Lok Sabha.

                                                    Congress may win battle, but lose war

Chidambaram said that the various steps taken by the government have resulted in increase of capital formation in agriculture from 10.2 per cent in 2003-04 to 12.5 per cent in 2006-07.

Outlining the policy measures taken by the UPA government to give boost to agriculture, he said the government implemented the National Horticulture Mission, undertook repair and restoration of the water bodies and also appointed the Vaidyanathan Committee report for reviving cooperative credit institutions.

Besides, the National Food Security Mission, the Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana and Mission for Pulses focus on increasing the farm production.

On the National Rural Employment Guarantee scheme, he said it is the UPA government that implemented this scheme in the 597 rural districts of India. 

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