Growth in states must for India to fight poverty: Jaitley

Strong economic growth in states is "imperative" for pushing up the country's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and giving it a "cutting edge" to fight poverty and generate jobs, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said today.

He also said that additional growth has to come from eastern states like West Bengal where industrialisation had suffered because of the policies followed in the last 35 years.

"In a global situation which is so adverse, India's GDP growth is 7.5 per cent. Is it difficult to add 1 per cent more which will give us that cutting edge to fight poverty and generate jobs?" Jaitley said at the second edition of Bengal Global Business Meet here.

"Given the structure of India's federal polity, it is imperative that the states grow as well. Despite political differences, strong states mean a stronger India. West Bengal contributes nearly 6 to 7 per cent of national GDP. Given the fact that growth of the eastern states was lower than those of the western states, the additional growth will have to come from the former," he said.

Referring to West Bengal, he said industrialisation in the state had suffered due to policies pursued in the last three and half decades.

"Summits of these kinds held every year clearly demonstrate the intention that the need of the hour is to generate growth, increase revenue and fight poverty for which investments are required," he said.

"It is in this context that West Bengal that has lost its glory of the past could be restored and I assure you that the Centre will give all its support to the state's endeavour to attract investments," Jaitley said.

If Bengal followed such a policy, it would be able to generate jobs and revenue needed to fight poverty, else would have to fall back on shallow political slogans, he said.

Dear Reader,


Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.

We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

Business Standard is now on Telegram.
For insightful reports and views on business, markets, politics and other issues, subscribe to our official Telegram channel