Transparency in political funding is needed: Modi

Need to make our political funding, process more transparent: PM Modi

Need to make our political funding, process more transparent: PM Modi

 Addressing the two-day National Executive meeting of the Bhartiya Janta Party’s (BJP) here on Saturday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi commended the “Karyakartas” for the party’s gains in 2016 and urged them to gear up for the forthcoming Assembly elections in five states.

“Our commitment is to change quality of life of poor. Demonetisation is part of long term measures against corruption and black money,” PM Modi said in his address at the BJP conclave.

PM Modi rallied the party workers to use their organisational strength to win over the poor and said that “serving the people amounts to serving God”.

Briefing the media on what the PM spoke at the meet, union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said that the prime minister called for “transparency in political funding” which the “BJP firmly supports”.

“PM observed very significantly that we need to make our political process more transparent, particularly spoke about political funding,” Prasad said.

“Some people worry about lifestyle but our priority is to make quality of life better for the poor and underprivileged,” Prasad quoted the PM as saying.

“PM saluted inner strength of poor who responded to his appeal, inspite of some difficulties,” Prasad added.

The members at the meet lauded the prime minister for his extraordinary move on demonetisation, which they declared a huge success, and cross-border surgical strikes against Pakistani terrorists.

Party president Amit Shah also praised PM Modi for India’s stance after the Uri attack.

“Because of the leadership and will power of the Prime Minister, for the first time in independent India, we gave a fitting reply by entering the enemy’s own home… this one decision changed the way the world looks at India,” Shah said.

He stressed that demonetisation would help the country get rid of corruption.

The meeting also recounted the party’s win in Assam and the formation of its government in Arunachal Pradesh.

The party’s national executive, which began in the national capital on Friday, also praised the armed forces and slammed Pakistan for unleashing terror in the country.

“Terrorism is today seen by the democratic and civilised world as a scourge whereas Pakistan continues to use it as state policy. It continues to push terrorists into India and other countries and engages in terror attacks and promotes violent insurgent and separatist movement in J&K.

“The surgical strikes ordered by the Prime Minister and total rejection of the separatist agenda by the people and governments of J&K and the Centre are a categorical assertion to Pakistan that its ulterior designs shall never succeed and the government led by PM Modi will continue to demonstrate zero tolerance for terrorism,” reads the resolution adopted by the party’s national executive.

The next BJP National Executive meeting scheduled to take place on April 15 and 16.

-January 7, 2017, New Delhi

 

Indian firms best, China worst on transparency : Survey

Indian firms best, China worst on transparency : Survey

Indian firms best, companies are the most transparent while Chinese firms the most opaque, a global anti-graft watchdog said in a new report that assessed efforts of emerging companies to fight corruption.
Berlin-based Transparency International in its report said: “Indian companies have the highest average score of any country. They all score 75 per cent or more in organisational transparency largely due to the Companies Act.”
Indian firms
Indian firms dominated the top spots in organisational transparency with Telecom company Bharti Airtel taking the first place with a score of 7.3 out of 10, followed by six units of conglomerate Tata and technology company Wipro, the report said.
The report covered 100 companies in 15 emerging market countries that also included Brazil, Mexico and Russia.
“In India, the Companies Act requires firms to disclose key financial information on all subsidiaries wherever they are located, resulting in Indian companies achieving the strongest score in this dimension,” the anti-graft watchdog said.
Nine companies (eight from China and one from Mexico) were awarded the lowest possible score of 0 per cent. Fifty-four out of the 100 companies score above average (50 per cent or more).
Chinese companies, which account for a third of those assessed, had the weakest overall performance, scoring an average of 1.6 out of 10 with just one, telecom gear maker ZTE, making it to the top 25.
“The very weak Chinese results stem from weak or non-existent anti-corruption policies and procedures, or a clear failure to disclose them in line with international best practice,” it added.
Transparency International said the report’s findings highlighted an urgent need for big multinational companies to do more to fight corruption.
It said the high average score of 77 per cent among Indian companies increases the overall average. In addition, 54 out of the 100 firms in this report score higher than 50 per cent in this dimension, while, among the companies in the global 2014 report, only 34 out of 124 score over 50 per cent.
The average score fell slightly by 0.2 compared to the last time the survey was taken in 2013, it said.
“Pathetic levels of transparency in big emerging market companies raises the question of just how much the private sector cares about stopping corruption, stopping poverty where they do business and reducing inequality,” said Jose Ugaz, Chair of Transparency International.
-11 July 2016 | PTI | Berlin

India has its hands full in implementing key reforms: Jaitley

India has its hands full in implementing key reforms: Jaitley

 

India has its “hands full” in bringing about structural changes and implementing key reforms to boost economic growth, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has said and hoped that the country will be able to improve its growth this year from the 7.6 per cent achieved last fiscal.

Outlining the direction forward for the Indian economy in his address at the Asia Society here yesterday, Jaitley said the country still requires a lot of structural changes and the government has taken steps to ease processes, make the business environment easier and bring in greater transparency into the system.

Jaitley expressed hope that the bankruptcy law would be approved over the next few weeks and said the government “is in the final stages” of passing a law that deals with commercial indebtedness.

The government has also changed arbitration laws, amended some of the “onerous provisions” of the Companies Act and will bring down corporate tax to 25 per cent over the next couple of years.

On indirect taxes, he said India is in the “last stages” before the Goods and Services Tax (GST) is approved by the Parliament and then with supporting legislations, it actually gets into implementation.

“I think we have all our hands full, the next couple of years bringing about each one of these structural changes. In addition to this, two significant directions which I have followed are increased expenditure in infrastructure and in rural India.

“These are the two areas which were lacking and these appear to be the focus area. That probably will be the direction of the economy in the next few years,” Jaitley said.

He said the world at the moment still faces serious challenges and India cannot “immune” itself from most of the challenges.

He however expressed hope that the country will be able to register improved economic growth this year as compared to the previous fiscals.

“Notwithstanding that we have consistently even in the slowdown environment grown by about 7 per cent, 7.2 per last year, 7.6 this fiscal which ended a few days ago and hopefully this year we could improve on that data,” he said in his address on ‘Make in India- the New Deal’ hosted by CII and the Asia Society Policy Institute.

Jaitley underscored that while India has done fairly well in an environment of global economic challenges, it has the potential to grow even faster.

“I have always believed that given by global standards in a slowdown environment, India is doing significantly well. But given by our own standards and our expectations of being able to grow faster, eradicate poverty and transform into a developed country, we probably can do a little better,” he said, adding that steps that are being taken in this regard to help India register faster economic growth.

“Each one of these steps is now bringing structural changes, bringing in more investment, better amenities in the rural areas, more infrastructure, creating the groundwork for the Indian economy itself to now concentrate on manufacturing,” Jaitley said.

He said legislations like the Goods and Services Tax (GST) are capable of adding to the India’s growth story and the fact that a good monsoon has been predicted after two bad ones “itself has a very positive impact as far as the economy is concerned.

“A good monsoon in turn will also improve upon domestic demand. And if a series of these factors within the country takes place, notwithstanding the slowdown of exports which is essentially on account of global slowdown, we are capable of improving upon our present growth figures which last year seems to have been at around 7.6 per cent,” he said.

Jaitley said there has been “significant transformation” in India and the country is “better off” than it was a few years ago.

“What was being referred to as policy paralysis is now referred to as the bright spot,” he said, adding that the government took decisions in its initial years to open up FDI in segments like defence, railways, real estate and food processing and simplified procedures so that investments become more attractive.

He said another “important advantage” that has taken place is “decisiveness” despite the noise of democracy.

“When the decisions by the executive are required, India has now recently shown a tendency to decide quickly. Decisions don’t hang around for a long period of time,” he said.

Describing the other “great transformation” that has taken place in the country, Jaitley said there was a “great stigma” that decision-making was not transparent in India and “where there could be some decisions taken for collateral reasons.

“That is all something that belongs to the past now. Government discretion in allocation of resources have virtually been completely eliminated and replaced by a market mechanism. That has also added to the credibility of the decision making process in India,” he said.

He said another challenge for the government was how to bring administration and the tax levels in India down to global levels.

“This was another area where India had earned a significantly bad name, that it was a very difficult jurisdiction to deal with. Taxation policy was unpredictable and this concerned both domestic and international investors.

“It was extremely important in the initial years for the government to put these fears (to rest) of retrospective taxes and arbitrary changes in the taxation policy, because investors always prefers consistency and stability and don’t want to be taken by surprise by a future decision,” he said.

He said direct taxes are being brought down to 25 per cent and while “some initial baby steps have been taken”, over the next 1-2 years as exemptions get phased out, more significant steps will be taken.

Highlighting the infrastructure development that has taken place, Jaitley said 233 national highways are under construction and expenditure on rural roads now is three times than what India was spending earlier.

In railways also, the target is to develop 400 railways stations in India over the next 2-3 years and emphasis is being given on developing regional airports. In rural areas also, focus is being given to irrigation and electrification programmes.

He said the government is focussed on expanding manufacturing activity in a very large number of areas and its target of increasing the manufacturing share in the Indian economy “is reasonably realisable”.

“The process of reforms when added to these existing opportunities open up the economy for investment, allows people to invest in sectors like the railways, defence, food processing that otherwise had not been encouraged in the past provides a great opportunity,” he said.

When asked about climate change, he said India, notwithstanding its development need, is completely committed to protecting the climate.

“The level of development we have reached is far, still the hard reality is we have a lot of distance to cover. We need more housing, power, toilets, roads  and factories. Therefore our requirements of fuel is certainly going to increase. Notwithstanding that our own standards of protecting the environment are very rigid.

“There is a method in each one of the steps we are taking,” like taxing oil, cess on coal and emphasis on alternative renewable energy.

“We are conscious of our responsibilities,” he said.

-19 April 2016 | PTI | New York

PM Modi spells out ‘mantra’ for growth – decentralisation, accountability, transparency

PM Modi spells out ‘mantra’ for growth – decentralisation, accountability, transparency

PM Narendra Modi on Wednesday addressed the Rajya Sabha while replying on the Motion of Thanks to President Pranab Mukherjee’s address and appealed to the lawmakers to pass all pending bills. The Congress party had earlier issued a whip asking all its MPs to be present in the Upper House during PM  Modi’s speech.

 

LIVE: PM Modi spells out 'mantra' for growth – decentralisation, accountability, transparency

 

Here are the live updates:-

-PM Modi concludes his speech.

-PM Narendra Modi recites ‘Safar Mein Dhoop To Hogi” by Nida Fazli before concluding his speech.

-Due to lack of cleanliness the poor are forced to spend more money on medicines: PM

-Cleanliness helps the poor the most: PM

-For first time Parliament debated on it. Govt may be criticised but issue is being discussed: PM

-Cleanliness is becoming a mass movement. PM

-Our focus is on job creation, new start-ups: PM

-We have emphasised on “value addition”: PM

We should aim to double the income of farmers by 2022: PM Modi

-I am not an economist like Manmohan Singh, that’s why I am not as knowledgeable as him, but I certainly some things: PM

-The biggest beneficiaries of MUDRA bank are SC/ST, OBC communities and women: PM

-There are two types of people in the world, one who work and the other who take credit for the work: PM Modi

-We have moved up in all sectors, Moody’s have given us positive ratings: PM Modi

-Effective or last mile delivery is what we are working on: PM.

-Govt is ensuring that benefit of subsidy goes only to those deserving, it is not issue of saving money, says PM.

-Opposition is examining my govt through microscope, wish it had done the same during its own rule: PM

-I am grateful to GN Azad, he brought a record of people who didn’t have accounts under Jan Dhan Yojna: PM

-PM asks Congress to give tickets to uneducated candidates in upcoming Assembly polls.

-I am reviewing infrastructure projects. Some of these projects have been stalled for decades: PM

-We are focussing on accountability: PM

-Decentralisation is the third aspect of Good Governance: PM

-Transparency is the hallmark of good governance, says PM

-We have focussed on policy-driven governance and given importance to transparency: PM

-Passage of all pending bills will give momentum to country’s progress: PM

-We need to move from incremental improvement to quantum jump: PM

-Nation is waiting for us to pass many Bills: PM

-This is a Chamber of Ideas and it must guide the nation. Coordination between both Houses is essential: PM

-We need to worry about the lack of educational facilities and overcome several such challenges that come our way: PM

-PM Narendra Modi talks about importance of education in Rajya Sabha

-Congress never gets a bad name: PM

-Sometimes I feel Congress has a boon like that. Its always said “attack on Opposition”, never said “attack on Congress”: PM

-There is a funny thing about “death”, no one blames death. they blame the reason why people die: PM

-I appeal to allow the Parliament to function smoothly: PM

-I am glad that over 300 amendments were passed during this period: PM.

-Its commendable how the House has taken President Mukherjee’s advice seriously and ensured that the House is not stalled: PM.

– You must have noticed that LS worked till late night yesterday, even after that everyone was happy with the work that happened: PM

– I thank the Opposition for allowing debate in Parliament.

-PM Modi thanks all those MPs for participating in the debate on Motion of Thanks in Rajya Sabha.

-PM address the Rajya Sabha.

-Lok Sabha adjourned till 2:10 pm.

-Rajya Sabha adjourned till 2 pm as protests over Sri Sri’s event continues.

-Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar evades question on Sri Sri Ravi Shankar’s event.

-Opposition MPs raise slogans ”Don’t misuse Army, protect us”.

-Uproar continues in Rajya Sabha over Sri Sri’s event, Opposition MPs protest at the Well of House.

Will the matter be decided here or at Green Court? Asks Jaitley.

-If a matter is pending with Tribunal, ordinarily chair doesn’t allow issue to be raised here: Arun Jaitley

-It would be wrong to doubt his commitment towards nature: Naqvi.

-Sri Sri Ravi Shankar is committed towards protecting environment: Naqvi.

-NGT is hearing the matter as we discuss the issue here: Naqvi.

-Event (Sri Ravi Shankar’s) is being held adhering to all rules and laws: MA Naqvi replies in RS.

-It’s highly irregular that the Army is used to build bridges for a private event: Yechury

-Left leader Sitamram Yechury asks, “How can Indian Army assist in this?”

-Uproar in Rajya Sabha over Sri Sri Ravi Shankar’s event on the banks of the Yamuna.

-Pathankot attack was on India and not on Punjab: Mann.

-AAP MP Bhagwant Mann says Centre should treat Punjab as a part of India.

-AAP MP Bhagwant Mann moves adjournment motion in LS on Centre demanding 6 cr from Punjab Govt as expenditure on deployment during Pathankot attack.

-BJP Parliamentary Party meet underway in the Parliament.

Advani, PM Modi atend BJP parliamentary board meet/ANI pic

 

-Prime Minister Narendra Modi to respond to the Motion of Thanks to the President for his address in Rajya Sabha today at 2 pm.

-BJP Parliamentary Party meet begins in the Parliament.

-PM Narendra Modi arrives for BJP Parliamentary Party meet in the Parliament.

 

The Prime Minister had earlier made his reply in the Lok Sabha and after that, the motion was adopted in the house.

Intervening in the debate on the Motion of Thanks, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had yesterday claimed that during the last two years of NDA regime, there was not a single case of corruption.

He said that corruption now is not a matter of core concern.

He told opposition parties that the government is trying to bring black money stashed away in foreign banks, but could not reveal the names, unless through the judicial process.

He said, if the names are made public, it would only help those violators.

The Finance Minister suggested opposition parties should eschew obstructionism and join hands with the government for the development of the nation while countering Rahul Gandhi’s attack over issues related to intolerance, inflation and foreign policy.

 

 

-March 9, 2016,New Delhi