A leader at summit

via http://newstodaynet.com/newsindex.php?id=12557%20&%20section=13 published on November 24, 2008

One of the National English Dailies of India has been organising ‘Leadership Summits’ since 2003. The sixth summit had been held in New Delhi and four politicians addressed the delegates on Friday 21 November. The Prime Minister Manmohan singh, UPA Chairperson and Congress President Sonia, Union Railway Minister Lalu Yadav and BJP Prime Ministerial Candidate & Opposition Leader L K Advani spoke at the conclave. Though their speeches have centered on ‘economic crisis’, L k Advani utilised the session to the hilt and made a strong pitch for the return of BJP led NDA government.


Earlier, the Prime Minister, attempted to play down the impact of the global meltdown on India by saying that no effort would be spared to deal with the effects of the meltdown. While assuring of a sustained growth rate of 8% in the ‘coming days’, he also agreed that the country is indeed facing a challenge in the economic front. In his usual ‘assuring’ style, which he has been adopting in the last four and a half years, in almost all the issues, he ‘assured’ the industrialists his government’s commitment to industry. He touched upon the situation faced by the nation in 1991 and felt that although the present situation is worse, the country has the resilience to handle the situation and come out of troubled waters.


Close on his heels, the Congress President called for a ‘prudent’ approach in regard to ‘liberalisation’. She recalled the ‘nationalisation’ of banks during Indhira Gandhi’s regime and said that her mother-in-law’s strategy has saved India. While appreciating the public sector banks for giving the required stability, she also called for a ‘balancing’ act by emphsising the need to help private players. Although she admitted that India too couldn’t be immune to the infection caused by the global meltdown, she also downplayed the present crisis in line with the Prime minister.


On the other hand, the opposition leader L K Advani was clear and candid in his analysis of the present economic crisis looming over India and pointing to the downplay of Manmohan and Sonia, he said, ‘the government was still in the denial mode and there is an all-round crisis’. He touched upon the uncertain future being faced by lakhs of employees due to widespread retrenchments and cautioned that the continuing trend would erode most of India’s gains of the last decade. He made a scathing attack on the UPA government and criticised its performance. Advani said, ‘the government is weak and is led by a failed leadership’ and added, ‘this is not how India should be governed’.


In the course of his speech, he made a clear comparison of six years of BJP led NDA government’s performance with that of the last five years of Congress led UPA’s performance. He pointed out how the UPA government has failed in almost all the sectors of governance and blamed it for not taking the opposition into confidence and expressed his disappointment over the government’s attitude of not consulting the opposition on vital issues. He also said that the UPA has benefited from the harvest of the cultivation of NDA and finally left the land barren. As told by him, the growth rate was 8.5% when the UPA took over, but when it leaves office in 2009 it is expected to hover around 6%, despite the Prime minister’s ‘assurance’ of achieving 8%.


Advani’s experience of over six decades of public life was quite evident in his approach and analysis of each and every issue, as he was addressing on the topic, ‘Looking ahead: My vision for India’. Emphasising that the BJP led NDA’s policies would be markedly different, he said that the present dismal trend would be changed and set in the right track within the first six months. He stood out by his visionary speech and gave a lot of hopes and confidence to the nation.  

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