Pratibha Patil: Development, modernisation of rural India a must

Kolkata, Sep 26, 2010 (Calcutta Tube) President Pratibha Patil Wednesday said development and modernisation of rural India is a must to ensure the country’s rapid yet inclusive growth and stressed on the integration of the village economy into the mainstream.

‘Indeed, the development and modernisation of rural India is a must to ensure India’s rapid yet inclusive growth,’ Patil said in her inaugural speech at the 37th National Management Convention here.

The president said about two-thirds of the country’s population lives in rural areas but their total share in India’s gross domestic product is less than one-third.

‘It is for this reason that I firmly believe that our rural economy must be integrated into the mainstream with other sectors of the economy. I also believe that agriculture in India needs a fresh approach to enhance its productivity and profitability,’ Patil said.

She said increased corporate investment in ‘this key sector’ of the economy could offer a new frontier of growth in rural areas.

The president stressed that industry partnering with agriculture, particularly in rainfed areas, could result in a ‘win-win option’.

‘Moreover, financial inclusion is an area where I would encourage India’s credit institutions and regulatory authorities, to put forth a synergised effort,’ Patil added.

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