The Bharatiya Janata Party [ Images ] on Thursday ripped apart the United Progressive Alliance [ Images ] government's economic policies, stating that the Manmohan Singh-led administration had chosen to ignore the opposition's concerns about the financial recession.
Addressing media persons on first day of the party's national executive in Mumbai [ Images ], senior party leader Murali Manohar Joshi [ Images ] said, "In October last year, we had cautioned the government about recession but the latter ignored us and took the matter lightly. Finance Minster Pranab Mukherjee [ Images ] had assured him us as the economic fundamentals were strong, and that everything would be okay. Today, the rupee has lost its value. The dollar is weak around the world but in India [ Images ] it is strong."
Lambasting the government's decision to hike petrol rates, he said that 50 per cent of the revised cost per litre of Rs 7.50 was taxes.
Dr Joshi, a former minister in the NDA government, said the government had no reply to offer when it was asked whether it had left everything to the market forces.
"In 2008, when the global meltdown started, then French President Nicholas Sarkozy had set up a three-member commission to find out the reason. Nobel laureate Amartya Sen [ Images ] was one of the members. Stating that the economic fundamentals were wrong, the panel told Sarkozy that GDP could not be the criteria for economic progress or prosperity."
Dr Joshi said he was shocked that a renowned economist like Dr Manmohan Singh [ Images ] could bungle and mismanage the economy.
Earlier they (the UPA government) blamed the opposition for all ills, but now they are blaming their allies and their ministers, Dr Joshi added.
The veteran BJP leader noted that India's over dependence on petroleum products was the cause of most ills.
"We should have exploited solar, bio, wind and hydro energy. We did not use ethanol," he said.
Outlining the party economic resolution adopted during Thursday's meeting, Dr Joshi blamed forward trading in currency as the reason for bankruptcy of banks.
He said that India should cater to its own market of 1.25 billion people rather than depending on exports.
"Any system that did not benefit the majority should be abandoned, as it is a failure. If the government accepts its faults, there is hope of change. The economy should be expanded by productive spending. Emphasis should be paid to quality education, healthcare and improving skills," he said.
"Public and private funds should be used to improve infrastructure. Government expenditure should be productive and used to create assets. Only then would the free fall of the rupee stop," Joshi summed up.