Identity politics has no room in India’s development agenda: Gujarat Official

"The Prime Minister has brought the culture in India that every state has to improve and compete. This is competitive federalism," said Resident Commissioner of Gujarat in Delhi Bharat Lal.

By: PTI | New York | Published:September 17, 2016 12:43 pm

Identity politics has no place in India where development and economic growth is occupying the centrestage, a senior official from Gujarat has said as he invited US firms to invest across various sectors in the state.

Resident Commissioner of Gujarat in Delhi Bharat Lal, leading a high-level Gujarat delegation to the US and Canada, said Prime Minister Narendra Modi has ushered in a culture of competitive federalism in the country where states are competing with each other to attract foreign investments and technological expertise.

“The Prime Minister has brought the culture in India that every state has to improve and compete. This is competitive federalism,” Lal said during a luncheon in New York on Friday organised by the US-India Business Council.

Making a passing reference to the political situation in Uttar Pradesh, where tensions surfaced between Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav and his uncle Shivpal Yadav, Lal said identity politics has no place in India where development and economic growth is occupying centrestage.

“It is the era of development politics in the country and the states. The era of identity politics is over and India is moving towards developmental politics,” he said.

During the week-long trip, Lal and his delegation visited Chicago, Houston and Washington, inviting company executives, investors and policymakers to the next edition of the Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit to be held from January 11 to January 13.

“Vibrant Gujarat is not confined to Gujarat alone. It is now connecting India to the world,” Lal said adding that the summit will be a “golden opportunity” for global investors to understand key recent policy reforms like the Goods and Services Tax and the measures being taken in the country to boost economic growth.

He said the summit will be attended by Heads of State and ministerial level delegations and will host platforms like the CEO conclave and Nobel laureates’ summit.

Lal showcased Gujarat as an ideal investment destination, with sectors such as agriculture, pharma, defence, petroleum and technology offering tremendous opportunities.

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He said the state government has been making consistent investments to improve infrastructure and the state has world-class roads, ports, airports and 24/7 power supply.

Apart from the administration and governance, Gujarat’s strategic location makes it an ideal investment destination, he said adding that the state is also focussed on using green technologies across industries.

Later talking to PTI, Lal said companies have been investing in Gujarat and many more are showing keen interest to invest in the state.

“We have seen an overwhelming response among investors and that also puts certain responsibility on us. The expectations are very high and people want to come and invest in our state and in India,” he said adding that so far the state has been fulfilling investor expectations, providing guidance and resolving issues.