Author: B R Shenoy
Editor(s): R K Amin & Parth J Shah
Publisher: Centre for Civil Society
ISBN/UPC (if available): 8187984082
The ambivalence of Indian planners between democracy and communism cannot continue indefinitely, despite endless transfusions of foreign aid. Compulsions of plan finance or economic chaos must take us to the parting of ways, sooner or later.
Either we take the road of economic liberalism, which will ensure maximum economic development and also a free society; or we get lured or forced into communism, turning to the soulless and fruitless path of regimentation, with the show windows exhibiting sensational sectoral achievements to keep us toiling endlessly, with little mass well-being and less freedom. It is for the collective wisdom of the Indian people to make the choice.
After gaining independence from British rule in 1947, the Government of India embarked on a path to evolve a socialist pattern of society in India, which it called a mixed economy-a compromise between communism and capitalism. Most economists went along with the tide, and so did those businessmen who could divert the resources appropriated by the state for their own use.
B R Shenoy, with his sharp intellect, his dogged individualism, his education in the London School of Economics and stints at the Reserve Bank, the World Bank and the IMF was eager to bring about economic progress along with social progress. This, as he repeatedly said, is possible only if a market-friendly policy appropriate for a free society is pursued.
When economic chaos and a foreign exchange crisis brought matters to a head in 1990-91, the Indian government decided to go in for globalization and liberalization. B R Shenoy did not live to see that day. This book presents his prophetic writings to those who need to understand history so as not to repeat it. You need not be a student of economics to appreciate the basic logic underlying Professor Shenoy's prophecies.
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