'India is the greatest experiment in democracy'

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Astana, Apr 8: Vice President Hamid Ansari today said India's participatory governance, broad-based planning and implementation of programmes of social justice is the greatest experiment in democracy ever undertaken in the world.

In his address at the Academy of Public Administration in Kazakhstan, he said the Indian government undertook a number of steps to improve governance structures, enhance checks and balances and bring about decentralisation of power down to the village level. He said in a democracy, the people must have the right political and economic opportunities to create institutions that are responsible for their needs and priorities, adding, ''Development is not what a government does to its people but what the people do by themselves and for themselves.'' Mr Ansari said governance plays a central role in economic development and growth because of its crucial role in resource accumulation and allocation.

He said the Indian economy has grown at close to 9 per cent per annum for four years in a row. The high investment rate of over 35 per cent of GDP and saving rate of 34 per cent of GDP symbolises a new dynamism in the Indian economy, he added.

Recently, public policy has been focussed on making the growth process socially inclusive and regionally balanced, he said.

In his welcome address, Dr Azhimzhan Akhmetov, Rector of the Academy, lauded India's vibrant democracy.

He also referred to cooperation between Indian Public Administration Institute and the Academy of Public Administration of Kazakhstan.

UNI

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