Rejecting Congress charges of favouring big business as "another canard", Narendra Modi today said that the incentives given by his government were policy-driven rather than discretion-based.
"I do believe in the importance of Corporate India and how it can help in wealth creation for the nation. I believe that in the last 60 years, the Congress party has indulged in rent seeking behaviour by encouraging red tape," the Gujarat Chief Minister told PTI.
He maintained that he sincerely believed in cutting down on the red tape. "While I have never been in favour of giving concessions to big businesses, I certainly believe in creating the right kind of atmosphere for investments by expediting procedures, reducing bottlenecks and encouraging transparency.
"Even when incentives have to be given to certain sectors, they have to be sector-specific and policy-driven rather than case-specific and discretion-based." Modi was responding to persistent charges by Congress leader Rahul Gandhi who had accused him of favouring industrial houses such as Adanis and Tatas. Dismissing the charges as "another canard being spread by a desperate Congress tottering to its fall", Modi said that in an important judgement last week in the Tata Nano case, the Gujarat High Court had upheld the Gujarat government's stand and vindicated it.
"The judgement has comprehensively debunked the allegations made in the petition. Now there is no jusitification for such propaganda," he said. The BJP Prime Ministerial candidate was referring to rejection of a PIL by the High Court challenging 'a soft loan' given to the Tatas for the Nano plant in Sanand as well as the land allocation.
Modi also said that his government's focus regarding industrial investment has been mainly on small and medium scale industries. The growth of micro, small and medium enterprises(MSMEs) had been only 19 per cent across the country compared to 85 per cent in Gujarat.