In a major initiative to pump prime the economy through public expenditure, the government has decided to inject a whopping Rs 50,000 crore (Rs 500 billion) for funding infrastructure projects.
"The plan is to spend Rs 50,000 crore on infrastructure... its specific contours will be announced anytime," Minister of State for Industry Ashwani Kumar told PTI.
He said the money would be spent on projects that would be built through the Public-Private-Partnership (PPP).
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had on Monday chaired a meeting of a committee, which discussed further liquidity injection into the cash-starved Indian economy that has started receiving blows from the global meltdown.
Finance Minister P Chidambaram, Commerce and Industry Minister Kamal Nath, Planning Commission chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia and Reserve Bank Governor D Subbarao are part of the committee, chaired by the Prime Minister, which is keeping a close eye on the impact of the global slowdown on the Indian economy.
Earlier addressing the India Economic Summit, Kumar said that the government has finalised an extensive programme for giving a stimulus to the infrastructure sector. "We are committed to give a major jump-start and technology will be a part of it," he said.
The minister said the government has received the Tata Group's head Ratan Tata's suggestion for creating a separate fund in a few banks to enable domestic companies meet global exigencies.
"The proposal has come and it will definitely be considered," he said. Kumar said few sectors of the economy are in greater need for funds. "In fulfilling their needs, whatever help the government can, it will provide," he said.
The minister has convened a meeting of industry associations tomorrow to assess their requirements. "The government at the highest level will work pro-actively with the industry so that we can come out (of the financial challenges) as soon as possible," he added. Global meltdown: Complete coverage
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