Radical shift in Govt. policies for effective development needed: Brinda

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New Delhi, June 23 (ANI): Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader Brinda Karat on Wednesday said that the effective realization of Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) depends on radical changes in existing government policies.

Speaking at the launch of the '2010 United Nations Millennium Development Goals Report' here Karat highlighted the need for a radical shift in existing government policies for effective development.

Stressing on the need for an efficient policy structure rather than mere statistics-based reports for holistic socio-economic growth, Karat demanded a 'rethink' by the government on its policy decisions in order to enrich the contemporary rights and development discourse in India.

"Unless it (the report) is accompanied by a reversal of current policies, I do not see how that (development and attainment of MDGs) is going to be possible. We are so far behind some of the major goals. Therefore, I would urge the government of India to look at this report seriously and to take the necessary policy decisions which are required," said Karat.

Karat also criticized the U.N. report's claim that despite the global economic downturn, poverty indicators had declined, saying that it was just one way of looking at the problem.

Karat opined that economic inequalities were on the rise owing to profit-orientated, market-driven policies that are the hallmark of liberal and neo-liberal regimes across the world.

"It is not just poverty that is increasing, it is the inequality. And the policies that are creating obscene levels of wealth. When you compare this with increasing poverty, that is where this whole issue of using poverty as a political tactic does not work," said Karat in reply to a question asking whether the leadership was exploiting the issue of poverty for their own political gains.

Comprising statistical perspectives on the eight MDGs, the U.N. report has revealed that hunger and malnutrition is increasing globally, and that the progress to end hunger has been stymied in most developing regions.

In the realm of education too, the UN report throws up disappointing figures.

Even though the report hails poor nations for making tremendous strides to achieve universal enrolment and retention at the primary school level, it observes that 'hope has significantly dimmed for universal education to be accomplished by the year 2015.'

Meanwhile, Karat also lashed out at the perpetrators of honour killings, which are rampant across India.

"They are not honour killings. They are absolutely horror killings. It is really unfortunate that we do not have a comprehensive law in this country to deal with the different dimensions of this crime. It is, of course, killings which shocked the entire nation. But apart from that, there is a list of crimes involved in this. There is public humiliation of the couple concerned, they are driven out of the villages and not allowed to live together (among others)," said Karat. (ANI)

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