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Gujarat is top State in economic freedom

Gujarat is the top state in economic freedom! This what the Economic Freedom of the States of India 2012 report says. The report has been released by the Center for Global Liberty and Prosperity, Cato Institute in collaboration with Friedrich-Naumann Stiftung.

The report has been prepared by known policy expert Mr. Bibek Debroy of the Centre for Policy Research, Mr. Laveesh Bhandari, Indicus Alaytics, Mr. Swaminathan S Anklesaria Aiyar, the Cato Institute and Mr. Ashok Gulati, Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices, Government of India. It estimates the economic freedom in the 20 biggest Indian States based on the date for 2011, using a methodology adapted from the Fraser Institute’s Economic Freedom of the World Annual Reports.

The report has demonstrated significant differences in economic governance that exist in India and has focused on state level reforms to improve inclusive economic growth.

The Index is based on 3 parameters- Size of Government, Comparative Study of Legal Structures and Security of Property Rights and Regulation of Labour, Business.

Gujarat displaced Tamil Nadu as the top state with economic freedom and its freedom index score has been rising very fast.

On Size Of Government…

Analyzing the size of Government, Mr. Bibek Debroy and Mr. Laveesh Bhandari write, “Gujarat’s is a well-known success story through much of the 2000s. Moreover it has had major successes in agriculture, social welfare programmes, water resource management. All of this is being achieved without an inordinate increase in the size of the government.”

It may be noted that Shri Narendra Modi has served as the state’s Chief Minister for the entire period that is being mentioned by the authors of the report.

Comparative Study of Legal Structures and Security:

A comparative study in under this head reveals, “as Gujarat leaves behind its sordid past of communal violence and destruction, other States are unable to improve security of life and property in the manner required. This puts a serious question mark on the sustainability of high economic growth in such States.”

The atmosphere of peace, unity and brotherhood in the last decade has truly contributed to the development in the state. Shri Modi often recalls how the word ‘curfew’ used to be the norm of the day during preceding administrations in Gujarat. To enhance votebank politics, brother was pitted against brother, community against community. Under Shri Modi, this has long become history and the state is scaling new heights of progress as one united team!

On Regulation of Labour and Business:

Gujarat has witnessed significant improvement in its index values and retains its pre-eminent position in ‘Regulation of Labour and Business.’

Equal weighted average ratings based on these three parameters have been used for determining the overall rating of the States. Mr. Debroy and Mr. Bhandari conclude: The top three States are Gujarat, Tamil Nadu and Madhya Pradesh. They are followed by Haryana and Himachal Pradesh.

According to the report, “Gujarat has significantly improved in its rating from 0.47 in 2005 to 0.64 in 2011, mainly driven by better legal and regulatory performance.”

The report has noted that as many as 8 states have seen a fall in their economic freedom rankings since 2005.

Enhancing the Growth & Accolades: A Robust Vision, a determined mission

From USA Congressional Think Tanks, Brookings Institutions, Financial Times, Wall Street Journal, policy organization Legatum Institute to TIME Magazine and India’s ASSOCHAM, India Today among several other organizations and groups, Gujarat’s development has been hailed universally.

Giving a strong impetus to these dazzling heights of progress is a solid vision, a mission to ensure that each and every citizen of Gujarat is integrated in the develop journey of the state. It is the farsightedness of Chief Minister Shri Narendra Modi that has made the state a strong engine of growth over the last 11 years!

As far as economic freedom is concerned, Shri Narendra Modi has a very clear vision that has been appreciated far and wide. Speaking to the Economic Times earlier this year, Shri Modi had said that the government has no business to be in business. He envisions the role of the Government as that of a facilitator, helping stimulate growth in every way possible. Shri Modi went on to share how in Gujarat things such as greasing the palms of bureaucrats and politicians simply does not exist- there is coherence in polices which is more than enough.

He encapsulated his stand as- “No Red Tape, only Red Carpet is my policy towards investors.”

Writing in Firstpost, Venky Vembu noted that in the economic sphere while the PM offered “tired clichés”, Shri Modi offers a Big Idea that he has successfully implemented in Gujarat! Similarly, Shashi Shekhar argues that Shri Modi articulates a clear and coherent stand on economic issues.

Today, in a time when crony capitalism and policy paralysis is plaguing the nation, Gujarat comes across as a breath of fresh air. Shri Modi himself says on many occasions that he has no son or son in law so who will be accumulate money for? Under his watchful eyes, the money that was earlier used up in enriching the pockets of a handful of middlemen is being utilized for the development of the state. Thus, on one hand there is freedom to grow and innovate while on the other hand the fruits of development are reaching the common people of Gujarat!

The Force Behind Gujarat’s Development- 6 crore People of Gujarat!

On many occasions Shri Modi has been asked to whom can the development in Gujarat be attributed? And everytime he is asked this question, quickly comes his reply- THE 6 CRORE PEOPLE OF GUJARAT! The development that the state has seen in the past 11 years has the scent of hardwork and sweat of 6 crore Gujaratis. The people of the state have shown amazing determination, zeal and commitment to take the state to newer heights of progress every single moment.

Recently, Asia’s leading brokerage house CLSA called Gujarat among the fastest growing states in India and called its development model most unique. It lauded Gujarat’s success in industry, agriculture and particularly praised the Government policies that have drawn investment in the state.

One of the key points CLSA noted is that Gujarat’s growth is characterized by low reliance on central funds. This yet again vindicated what Shri Modi says- that the growth of Gujarat is due to the people of Gujarat no Hand can take imaginary credit for the growth of the state!

It is great to see Gujarat’s growth receive such encouraging words very often. It surely will inspire the people to further work hard and touch heights of progress never seen before through the Mantra of ‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas’ (Collective efforts, inclusive growth).

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