India has to live with exchange rate fluctuations: PM

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Panaji, Dec 27 (UNI) India, like any other country in a globalised economy, has to live with the exchange rate fluctuations, Prime minister Manmohan Singh said today.

Replying to a volley of questions through video conferencing facility at the Porvorim Secretariat Complex of the Goa government after launching the Goa Broadband Network(GBBN) here, the Prime minister said the IT being the sunrise industry, was affected with the recent hardening of Rupee against the Dollar.

'The government could not offer any comment on the fluctuations in a globalised economy and we have to manage to live with it', he said.

At the same time, he said the IT industry could play a vital role in different sectors including education and health besides providing jobs through BPO's and KPO. IT, which was a part of the knowledge sector, was one of the key drivers of world economy, he said.

Regarding education, Dr Singh said the 11th Plan envisaged reducing the school drop outs under Sarva Siksha Abhiyan besides enhancing the facilities at the secondary and higher education level.

He also stressed the need for reducing the growing disparities between states and union territories besides urban and rural areas, which required a multi-fceted strategy to eliminate the disparities during the plan period.

Commenting on farmers selling land for IT sector, the Prime Minister said Indian agriculture needs more productivity and diversification including animal husbandry. Industry and Agriculture also needs further strengthening.

To another question, Dr Singh said Goa will have equitable share when the question of opening of more institutions of higher learning like the IIT's, IIM's and Indian institutes of science and research were concerned. They were under discussion under the 11th Plan.

Goa, he said, could be a knowledge hub as well as of creativity, spirit of adventure and tourism if it had the best use of the human resources development potential available. It could also become a top international tourist destination through the service sector whch was driving the world economy, he added.

The chief minister Mr Digambar Kamat moderated the video conferencing facility, which was a part of the GBBN project.

Earlier, Mr Kamat, IT minister Dayanand Narvekar and chief secretary J.P.Singh, in presence of governor S.C.Jamir, pleaded with the Prime minister for a special package for boosting infrastructure facilities in Goa to cope with the tourist inflow.

They said more than 28 lakh tourists, both domestic and foreign, had been visiting Goa every year as against its 14 lakh population even as it exerted pressure on its roads and other infrastructure with mounted mining activity which was fetching considerable revenue for the Centre.


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