In an apparent dig at Congress and some regional parties, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today said "surnames, families and lineages" will soon cease to matter in politics and such a trend has already begun in the business world.
Describing 1991 as the watershed year in Indian history, Jaitley also said opening up of the economy has made the world "more cruel" than ever before and has ensured that only the fittest will survive and the excellence will be rewarded.
Addressing students at the third convocation of the National Law University here, Jaitley said, "Survival of fittest is more applicable today in law and business... Surnames, families and lineage will not matter."
Stating that a bulk of the top-50 companies do not belong to the traditional business families now, the senior BJP leader said hopefully time will soon come when "surnames, families and lineages" will cease to matter in politics too.
While he did not name anyone, his comments assume significance because of members of particular families holding top positions at a number of political parties including Congress and a host of regional parties across the country.
Addressing the law students, Jaitley further said the phrase 'brain drain' was no more relevant and India now has a "brain bank" that can serve the society, the country and the world.
With its talented manpower, India can play a bigger role in the world, especially in the developed countries, which are facing shortage of workforce, he added.
"1991 in many ways was a watershed period for India. The pre-1991 discourse and the process of thinking was more regulatory. It didn't allow full utilisation of energies and capabilities of Indians. But 1991 marked, even in the field of economy, an unleashing of energies," he said.
Jaitley, himself an eminent lawyer, said changes that have taken place in the last few decades provide the students with many opportunities.
Recalling the advent of economic liberalisation, the Finance Minister said that "1991 was a watershed year" as prior to that India was a regulated society and has changed the way people would approach an issue.
The onset of liberalisation also marked the unleashing of individual potential, prompting enterprising and talent people to rise higher in life, he added.
It has also transformed the legal education and encouraged setting up of law universities and colleges to meet the emerging needs of society and businesses, Jaitley said.
At present, he said, law students have several options besides litigation as compared to earlier years where property dispute was a pre-dominant area of litigation.
Law students can pursue career international trade, academics and world is the field for them, he added.
As regards the legal services, he said, talented persons were also needed to join academics as well as the bench, in addition to other fields.