India has mechanism to deal with corruption: Anand Sharma at WEF

India has mechanism to deal with corruption: Anand Sharma at WEF

At the World Economic Forum, Sharma dismisses the criticism of India's growth story and says its economy is robust.

WTO director-general Pascal Lamy, left, talks to Anand Sharma in Davos. WTO director-general Pascal Lamy, left, talks to Anand Sharma in Davos.

Brushing aside the prophets of doom and gloom at the World Economic Forum (WEF), India on Saturday asserted that it has the mechanism to deal with issues of corruption and is robust enough to brave the impact of the global financial crisis on the domestic economy.

"It is always fashionable to go with the wrong perceptions but India is a rule-governed Republic... We did handle the Satyam scandal effectively. You are talking about 2G but I can name many other Gs. This perception about India has to change. We have all the mechanism in place to tackle any kind of problems," said Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma.

Responding to the issues of corruption and scams raised at a WEF session on 'How Immune is India?', an aggressive Sharma questioned, "Has the US not seen the Enron and the UK its News of the World (scandal)? Let me question whether other countries have got the system to tackle frauds."

The issues of corruption was raised by BBC commentator Nik Gowing who said, "things like 2G corruption, Anna Hazare and (roll back of) FDI in retail have added to this (negative) perception".

On FDI in retail, Sharma said, "We are not going to roll back the will happen and the pause cannot be too long."

Dismissing the criticism of India's growth story, the Minister said, the country's economy is robust and can withstand any global shock.

"I pity them who have such perception that there are worrisome developments ...the economy is on path to grow by 7 to 7.5 per cent. Those who come to Davos should have concerns about their own economies not about India. India can take care of itself," he said.

At a time when the development countries are facing problems and eurozone crisis has become the main focus of participants at the WEF's showcase event, India is all set set to clock a growth of about 7-7.5 per cent in fiscal 2011-12.

"They (critics) should say what really is wrong with our economy," Sharma said, adding India's international commerce has been expanding and the trade deficit is under control.

Admitting that global events will have an impact on India also, Sharma said the country had successfully moved out of the 2008 global crisis and would do so again.

"We live in a world which is inter-connected and inter dependent. So, if we say a major earth shattering event has taken place in one part of the world, the other part can't remain unaffected totally.

"Having said that, we can still sustain a high growth rate on an overall basis. In the past too, such as in 2008-09, we did manage to move out of the troubled times and this time also we are confident to weather the storm," he said.

Sharma also said the Indian economy is primarily driven by domestic consumption and domestic production.

On the ongoing assembly elections in India, Sharma said, "I can tell you that we (Congress party) are surely going to win Uttar Pradesh. We don't go by the verdict of critics having wrong perceptions. We go by the verdict of voters."

Participating in the discussion, rating agency Standard and Poor's (USA) President Douglas Peterson, said India, which was assigned stable outlook, is facing "challenging economic scenario that (the country) needs to take care of."

Bharat Forge CMD Baba Kalyani said that no country in the world is immune to such a kind of an economic scenario.

The stable and investment grade rating also talks about inflation and a large population being outside the economic growth process, he said, adding, "We need to build infrastructure and a do a lot".

Published on: Jan 28, 2012, 10:43 PM IST
Posted by: Navneeta N, Jan 28, 2012, 10:43 PM IST