Vibrant Gujarat 2017: A resounding success
A grand vision, but not a new one! That is more or less what Mahatama Gandhi said when running his Swadeshi campaign. The then Chief Minister of Gujarat, now the Prime Minister of India started the Vibrant Gujarat in 2003, but this biennial investors’ summit saw the amazing growth over the year. It becomes the story of Gujarat’s exceptional growth. Vibrant Gujarat is not only for mass production but also production for masses. In winter chill, Gujarat freezes 25,578 MoUs on the biennial business blitzkrieg. The committed investment is likely to cross Rs 30 lakh crore.
The global Summit of Vibrant Gujarat has entered its 8th edition in 2017. While addressing a massive crowds of leaders, investors, corporations, thought leaders, policy and opinion makers, Prime Minister said that India have become 6th largest manufacturing country in the world. Today, India is a bright spot in the global economy. We are seen as the engine of global growth…Delighted to share that we have become the sixth largest manufacturing nation in the world, up from 9th.
Prime Minister also said that the government has taken steps to improve business climate and the total FDI inflows in the last two-and-a-half years have touched $130 billion. “India has become the fastest growing major economy in the world. Despite the global slowdown, we have registered excellent growth. Today, India is a bright spot in the global economy. We are seen as the engine of global growth,” he added.
“Our development needs are huge. Our development agenda is ambitious. We want to provide a roof over every head by 2022. We want to provide jobs to every hand. W e want to provide energy that is cleaner. We want to build roads and railways faster. We want mineral exploration to become greener. We want to build urban amenities that are sturdier. We want quality of life to get better and better,” said PM Modi at inaugural address of Vibrant Gujarat Summit.
Not only more than 50 global CEOs attended the CEO conclave but also the audience of nearly 15,000 people included heads of foreign governments, Nobel laureates and Indian industry leaders including Mukesh Ambani, Anil Ambani, Anand Mahindra, Gautam Adani, Dilip Sanghvi, Adi Godrej, Ajay Piramal.
Some of the international CEOs present at the event included Boeing International president Bertrand-Marc Allen, Emerson Electric Company president Edward L Monser, Trafigura CEO Jeremy Weir, Electricite de France chairman Jean-Bernard Levy, Suzuki Motor Corporation president Toshihiro Suzuki and CISCO executive chairman John Chambers, among others.
Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley addressed a gathering on second day of Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit. He said that since 1996, we had been repeatedly negotiating and renegotiating treaties with countries, which in effect was not solving the circulation of undeclared money. In the past few years we have re-written these treaties in a way that this will stop such a flow of untaxed money. Indian economy got opened up significantly. While this was happening, it became clear India has become aspirational. The GST will also help merge all this and make India one common marketplace. It will lead to better and hassle-free goods and services. It will free many bottlenecks. Once GST is rolled out Indian economy will be cleaner, stronger.
Finance Minister Jaitley also said that our economy will be much better, bigger and cleaner and India will be a highly successful economy. Indian Economy has opened up; India is back on global radar. Difficult decisions initially pass through difficult phases Excessive currency has its own temptations; seen its impact.
Speaking at the Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit at Gandhinagar, RBI Governor Urjit Patel underlined the need for also ensuring that the medium-term consumer-price based inflation target of 4 per cent was “secured on a durable basis”. At the same time, he said RBI would continue to press ahead with a “fluid transmission” of monetary policy and wanted the government to infuse adequate capital in the banking system.
Delhi needs a ‘Mahatma Mandir’
The ‘Mahatma Mandir’ in Gandhinagar witnessed the 8th edition of Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit 2017. The ‘temple’ is a convention centre and a memorial which is inspired from life and philosophy of Father of the Nation–Mahatma Gandhi. Covering an area over 34 acres, it is one of the biggest convention centres in India. There is no hesitation to say that capital city of India, Delhi has no such infrastructure to hold a summit as big as VGGS. One must applaud PM Modi’s work as Chief Minister of Gujarat.
Tata’s Enduring Faith
Businessman Ratan Tata received a big round of applause from a massive audience at inaugural ceremony of Vibrant Gujarat Summit, when he said that ‘It is stupid if you are not in Gujarat.’ Calling himself a ‘Gujarati’ while addressing, Tata also said that people abroad talk of the state and India in the same breath, some years back I got the fortune and good luck of moving our car factory to Gujarat and soon again with leadership of Narendra Modi, Gujarat has become one of hubs of car manufacturing in India.
Out of Imagination
There were more than 200 journalists and photographers, who went to Gandhinagar, Gujarat to cover 8th Vibrant Gujarat Summit from Delhi and other parts of the country. Out of them there were some who had never been in Gujarat before. After seeing the development of Ahmadabad and Gandhinagar many could not believe it, although they always used to read about Gujarat’s Developmental story. Many started whispering that Delhi’s Yamuna resembles a drain, while Sabarmati in Ahmadabad looks like river Thames in London. Journalists stunned after looking at world-class infrastructure facilities, eco- friendly roads and transportations, etc.
‘Sprinter’ Urjit Patel
RBI Governor Urjit Patel ran to avoid the media contingent at the Vibrant Gujarat summit. On the second day of the summit, Governor addressed a session on “Macro and Micro Drivers of Business Potential of IFSCs in India”. Realising that a large media contingent was waiting for him at the entrance of the first floor seminar hall, Patel sneaked away through the back entrance and began sprinting as he observed media persons running after him. He moved down the staircase two at a time and jumped into his car before the media could reach him..
Born in Gujarat, Mahatma Gandhi led India to Independence. We remember Sardar Patel as the man who united India. PM Modi is also from Gujarat, who is successfully working to regain India’s lost supremacy. It means Gujarat always show paths to fellow Indians. The success of ‘Vibrant Gujarat’ is echoing in every nook and cranny of India, and now every state of India started following Gujarat in organizing global investment summits be it Momentum Jharkhand, Make in Odisha, Happening Haryana or Invest Madhya Pradesh etc.
There was session of “Nobel dialogue” where nine Nobel laureates participated. And they were equivocal in their assertion that the ignorance of political class about the science was a serious concern. And a group of them launched a frontal attack on a group of NGOs, particularly the Greenpeace, that have been resisting the use of genetically modified (GM) seeds. Venkatraman Ramakrishnan pointed out that those who have been using genetically modified medicines for diseases are opposed to GM seeds.
Quoting figures, the panel comprising Harold Varmus, Randy Schekman, Richard Roberts and Ramakrishnan pointed out that the traditional agriculture would fail to feed the burgeoning population unless it is supplemented by technological intervention. They dismissed the fear of NGOs and their backers in politicians as hogwash and not based on science. The most unequivocal indictment of India came from David Gross, a physicist, who cautioned that India must not be afraid of failure, it has to think big. In a query about if the development of science is coterminous with the affluence, Gross said that India was richer than China three decades back. He clarified that science must be promoted irrespective of economic condition. If this is not done, “you will become a service economy without any manufacturing growth” he said, adding that India’s ratio of technical/scientists with per ten thousand population is far far below than any developed nation.
For the first time, Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit proved to be a unique platform to offer an interface of scientists with industry. Students from various colleges from across the state were brought in to have interaction with top scientists of the world. At the same time, industrialists were given an opportunity to interact with Nobel laureates and think about developing world-class institutions to promote various discipline of science.
Development of Bovine-Economy is the need of hour
India is traditionally agriculture based country and the country was self-sufficient of livestock and dairy in the past. However, with rapidly growing population, it now depends mostly on foreign imports. It is government’s lack of interest, limited industrialisation and unorganised supply chain systems. Now it is time for rigorous discuss on livestock concept – Investment opportunities, moreover, importantly need to implement it in grassroots level.
The efficient production of milk under good hygienic condition is the key to successful dairying. There is a need of Industrial parks for cow based investment, and cultural and export-oriented clusters with villages and waste lands. Gauchar bhumis are necessary for model gaushalas, so government needs to plan accordingly. There is requirement of social business friendly facilitators and training for a successful business services model.
Government needs to identify the areas where desi-breed cows are still in abundance. We have to set up a network among panchayats, banks, insurance providers and forests for a robust cow-based economy. There is also need to build a spiritual, holistic and climate friendly dimension for better results. We need more research and documentation on A2 milk, panchagavya and medicinal properties of cow products. Need to extend the role of NRI and PIO for development of cows in India.
Best works on serving cows around Gujarat need to be graded. Dr W.R.Reddy, IAS, Director General NIRD &PR, Hyderabad has agreed to have training on PPP model. Niti Ayog is fully involved in the noble works, it is a good sign. We also need to form a group of volunteers for cow-based investments and industrialisation.
To tackle challenges, it is necessary to have agriculture and development of a specialised industrial central processing and packaging unit, provision of long-term interest free financing solutions for farmers, technical and management skills trainings as well.
Dr. Vallabhbhai Kathiria, Chairman, Gauseva Ayog & Gauchar Vikas Board, Govt. of Gujarat
The three-day event partnered by 12 countries justified the theme `Connecting India to the world’ as 2,743 international delegates from nearly 100 countries participated. “One of the biggest take away from this year’s VGGS is that all the foreign delegates would act as brand ambassadors of Gujarat in their respective countries,” chief minister Vijay Rupani said, addressing the valedictory function.
The Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit 2017 is a roaring success. Though Modi is endowed with a greater political responsibility, his two-day stay in Gandhinagar for this event underlines the importance he attached to Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit. Since 2003 when Modi launched Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit, he was confronted with doubts, suspicion, and possibility of a failure. He, however, trusted his instincts and went whole hog to make it a success. In today’s context, Modi conveyed multiple political and social messages through Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit which has developed into an international interface for industry, science, and society. His tapping of fingers on the desk in consonance with the song “Jai Jai Garvi Gujarat” was an expression of satisfaction and contentment.
by Sanjay K Bissoyi