Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat believes that Gross Domestic Product (GDP) does not truly reflect the economic performance of India, as it is a foreign concept. He suggested that Niti Aayog can come up with a concept to measure growth in India based on parameters exclusive to the economic personality of the country. He also said Air India should be sold only to an Indian company.
Speaking about long-term perspectives for the Indian economy and economic policies at the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) in Mumbai, Bhagwat said, “There are countries that have rejected the concept of GDP. Bhutan uses a happiness index. In the Indian scenario that may not be suitable, so we can come up with our own index for measuring growth.”
Bhagwat also rejected the concept of a cashless economy, which has been championed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The RSS chief said, “We can aim for a less-cash economy. But there are many people in this country who cannot go cashless. They simply cannot afford to invest energy in understanding ‘cashless’. There needs to be some cash flowing in the world economy.”
Even as the government pushes to privatise debt-ridden Air India, Bhagwat said Air India should only be handed over to an Indian company. “It is not that Air India is not working properly, but it is not being run properly. It should be handed over to someone who can run it well. But this has to be an Indian company. India should never hand over its domestic airspace to a foreign company,” he said. Bhagwat said Air India has many assets that need to be preserved, such as landing rights at airports in major cities across the world.
The RSS chief said India by adhering to good economic principles can set an example before the world. Asserting that agricultural economy will have to give way to trade and business, he urged the country to accept that some agricultural land will have to be forfeited for business and trade, as the three will go hand in hand for development.