Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday began consultations with various stakeholders ahead of the final national budget to be presented next month, in the first such exercise both for him and the Narendra Modi government.
The finance minister first met with representatives of the farm sector, including noted agriculture scientist and technocrat M.S. Swaminathan, and was scheduled to meet with a group of civil society members later in the evening.
During the course of next few days, he will also meet members of various industry bodies such as Ficci, CII and Assocham, besides the heads of state-run and private banks, sources said. He will also hold a separate meeting with trade groups.
Ahead of the meetings, Jaitley had atttributed the current woes of the economy to the decade of what he termed as “jobless growth” and said his task will be to hasten the process of economic reforms, bring down prices and revive industrial sector.
“Reviving the growth momentum, containing inflation and altering the pattern of growth to gainful employment is today an overriding priority,” the finance minister had said in his Facebook post summing two days ago.
“There is a need to boost domestic low-cost manufacturing and hasten the pace of reform. Price stability and growth are intertwined, but may require a different strategy. This will involve fiscal rectitude as a combination of monetary and fiscal policy.”