High growth bypasses 77 pc population: Sengupta

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New Delhi, Jan 31 (UNI) The high economic growth the country is witnessing has bypassed 77 per cent of the population, Economist Arjun Sengupta, heading a Government panel on unorganised sector, said today.

''We welcome the around 9 per cent growth rate, but unfortunately it has not touched, infact bypassed, 77 per cent of the population,'' Mr Sengupta told the 8th Conference on Social Sector issues.

He said though the number of people living in abject poverty had come down, 836 million people still had not benefited from the high growth rate.

''Only 235 million people have benefited, which in itself is not a small number.... But 3/4th of the population is still out of the growth process,'' he added.

In a severe attack on the Government, he said everybody was talking about ''inclusive growth'' as a mantra, but actually doing nothing about it in practice.

''What is the Government doing to counter the trend of high growth rate bypassing a large section of the population.... It can do a lot since it is committed to welfare of the poor,'' he said.

He said the policy of high growth was not an end in itself but should be used as an instrument to do good for the poor.

''We have to have programmes targeted at the poor. The whole planning should be how to monitor, implement and deliver the policies.... To replicate the success of National Rural Employment Programme elsewhere,'' he said.

UNI YJ MIR DS1435

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