‘Freebies’ no longer going to aid India develop: Naidu

Hyderabad: Information and Broadcasting Minister M Venkaiah Naidu today said “freebies” would no longer help the country develop and maintained that reforms were the need of the hour.

Naidu, while addressing students of Indian School of Business (ISB) here, said, the NDA government is committed to protecting the public sector units and at the same time would encourage private sector participation in India’s growth story.

“We are following a particular model so far – Soviet model of Socialism – which proved to be not harmonious with the Indian situation. Now, we are changing our approach.

“Freebies (free power to public) can no longer take the country forward. We are trying to be populistic like (offering) free power,” he said, while talking about the implementation of ‘Smart Cities’ project.

He said business and industry are vital for the growth of the country and the government would come forward to offer concessions to the industry if it is worthy.

“We are focusing on the ‘ease of doing business’ and removing the obstacles that are there in the business. We have no problems in giving necessary concessions, also so that the business grows and then value is added and employment is created,” he asserted.

“Earlier, the slogan was Automation is anti-nation.

Government gives priority to business and to the industry and removed all obstruction. Reforms are also need of the hour,” the senior leader said.

Referring to accumulated losses of Air India and government-run hotels, he said the national carrier has loses to the tune of Rs 40,000 crore and it would impact the public indirectly.

“Now, public sector is also made accountable. If you don’t perform and then you have to go on giving salaries (to the employees of those loss making PSUs), that is not possible. Of course, they should be given the comfort. We got to protect the public sector and at the same time encourage private sector,” he said.

Meanwhile, in an apparent dig at Pakistan, he claimed, “our neighbour is abetting, funding and training terrorism without any hesitation.”

“The entire country says one word that Kashmir is an integral part of India and even Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (POK) has to be with India,” he said.

He also requested political parties not to use the issues pertaining to Dalits for political advantages and categorically stated that law and order is state subject.