A senior RSS functionary said the organisation raised the issue at a meeting with Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman last month
The Bharatiya Janata Party-led (BJP) government has been urged by multiple quarters, including its ideologue the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), to focus on the rural economy in the upcoming Budget, reports Hindustan Times, quoting sources.
Those who expressed their view that focus on policies to boost the rural economy could help aggregate demand and tackle the economic slowdown were think tanks, Finance Ministry experts and RSS functionaries, the publication added.
RSS feels this would also reap political dividends for the BJP, and at a meet in October raised the same with Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, an RSS functionary told the paper. The Sangh felt that 'lopsided focus' on urban issues did not work and tackling rural concerns will mitigate the slowdown, the source added.
Ground feedback suggested incentives for small and marginal farmers, with a focus on long term policy intervention rather than sops, to make “farmers self-reliant and farming profitable,” the functionary added.
On November 18, the Finance Minister acknowledged the slowdown but said India’s economy is still projected to grow the fastest among G20 nations and that the government has taken several measures to this effect.The government has consulted stakeholders and experts feel the upcoming Budget is an opportunity to boost employment, income and consumption in rural India. It is focusing on credit disbursal in rural areas through small non-banking finance companies (NBFCs) because of their greater access in villages, the source added.