PC for accountability of ministers, govt

Union Home Minister P Chidambaram speaks at the session on Monday. PTI

Making this suggestion at the AICC plenary session here, Union Home Minister P Chidambaram said it was imperative to deliver and give good performance for the Congress-led UPA to return to power but added that he had no doubt that the Congress or a Congress-led government will rule at the Centre for the next 10 years.

Chidambaram has been giving “performance report” at the end of every month ever since he took over as home minister after the Mumbai terror attacks in November 2008.

Chidambaram also called upon the party and the government to “bite the bullet” and pass the Women’s Reservation Bill to give 33 per cent representation to the fairer sex in the Lok Sabha and state Assemblies. The Bill, which has been passed by the Rajya Sabha under controversial circumstances, has not been taken up in the Lok Sabha yet.

Noting that the BJP was envious of the Congress, he said it was because of the “electability” of the Congress and its capacity to deliver. “The BJP is envious of the Congress because of its capacity not only to govern for five years but also get re-elected.
The Congress can deliver growth. The BJP-led NDA government, except in 1999, gave highest growth rate of 6.4 per cent while from 2004 to 2009, the lowest growth given by the Congress was 6.7 per cent and that too during the recession period.

“In UPA II the growth rate was 7.4 per cent in the first year and 8.9 per cent in the first half of this year and it will cross 9 per cent this year. It was the moderate growth of the BJP versus the impressive growth of the Congress in the last one decade,” he said.

On the complaint by some states about cash problem, Chidambaram, who was speaking on economic resolution, said the cash balance of all states put together was Rs 95,398 crore a few days ago.

“If the states say they don’t have money, don’t believe them. States should know how to spend. Last year’s devolution was Rs 2,85,227 crore, while in the next year it will cross Rs 3 lakh crore,” he pointed out.

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