CIRC in MEDIA - April 2011

 Make democracy more deliberative: Plan panel member Maira
Press Trust of India, April 19, 2011

The Plan panel today called for making the democratic process more participative to deal with dissatisfactions like the recent agitation by activist Anna Hazare for implementation of the Lok Pal Bill.

"We need to establish in our country a deliberative democratic process... Democracy is not only about elections... If an institution is not perceived to be functioning then people will device shortcuts," Planning Commission member Arun Maira said here while addressing the CUTS-CIRC International Conference.

He said institutions need to be made more receptive to the public''s wishes. "When official regulations are not working, people will find other ways," Maira said.

Pointing to the recent four-day long fast by Anna Hazare and his group, the Plan panel member said people may have different opinions regarding formulation of laws but without effective functioning of the government bodies citizens tend to seek other ways.

He also added that in most instances people are apprehensive about new regulations.Commenting on regulations in the financial sector, he said: "To wait for crisis to induce regulations is probably not the right thing. It should be voluntary." PTI PPB

This news item can also be viewed at:

 Inflation may ease to 6 per cent this fiscal: PMEAC
Economic Times, April 19, 2011

NEW DELHI: Prime Minister's economic panel today said that average inflation this fiscal may ease to 6 per cent from about 9 per cent at present.

"I think it (inflation) will be around 6 per cent... probably that is where it will settle down," Prime Minister's Economic Advisory Council ( PMEAC )) Chairman C Rangarajan said on the sidelines a CUTS event here.

Wholesale price inflation (WPI) in March rose to 8.98 per cent, higher than Reserve Bank's projection.

"I think the inflation will come down in April. What happened in March was quite unexpected... but the food price inflation is coming down. The wheat production is very good. Therefore, I expect the food prices to come down further in April and that should help in the overall headline inflation coming down," Rangarajan said.

On the impact of rising crude oil prices on inflation, he said, that has been shielded so far as retail prices have not been adjusted to international crude prices, particularly with respect to diesel.

"But for some more time, probably we might be able to shield the diesel prices from external influences. About 3-4 months from now when inflation rate falls to a much lower level, perhaps we will have to take a decision on what to do with the diesel prices," Rangarajan said.

When asked if the Greece debt crisis could hit foreign capital flows into India, he said, that may not have a direct bearing on the inflows.

"Total quantum of fund flowing into the emerging market may come down a little bit but as far as India is concerned what will decide it (inflow) will be the perspective on India's growth and India's strength and I do not think it will be seriously affected," he said.

This news item can also be viewed at: