nd str and n rastr             t re       9.13
     providing healthcare to the masses.37 In the                       in India is seen connected to three major inter-
     coming times, the government went from one to                      related areas, namely—
     another generations of the reforms, setting new                          (i) A tool of public sector reforms40
     targets and every time trying to make reforms                          (ii) A part of the economic reforms started
     socio-politically possible.                                                    in mid-1991. It has to be done as
          Reforms with the human face was one                                       a complementary part of the ‘de-
     such attempt of the United Progressive Alliance                                reservation of industries’.41
     in 2003 when it formed the government at the                          (iii) Initially motivated by the need to raise
     Centre. It was believed that the ‘India Shining’                               resources for budgetary allocations.42
     slogan of the outgoing government (i.e., the
                                                                             The approach towards public sector reforms
     NDA) was correct, but remained localised in its
                                                                        in India has been much more cautious than that
     effects to the urban middle class only.38 The new
                                                                        of the other developing countries. India did not
     government seemed taking lessons from the past
                                                                        follow the radical solution to it—under which
     and tried to make India shine for the rural masses,
                                                                        outright privatisation of commercially viable
     too. Its one programme, the Bharat Nirman (a
                                                                        PSUs is done and the unviable ones are completely
     rural infrastructure focused programme), could be
     seen as a political attempt to make it happen.39
          Only the coming times will tell as to what
     extent the government has been able to educate                         .    Publication Division, India 1991            ew elhi
                                                                                   overnment of ndia,         .
     the masses (better say the voters who vote!) the
                                                                          41.    The de-reservation of industries had allowed the
     needful logic of the reforms.                                               private sector to enter the areas hitherto reserved for
                                                                                 the Central overnment. t means in the coming times
        dIsInvestment                                                            in the unreserved areas the S s were going to face
                                                                                 the international class competitiveness posed by the
                                                                                 new private companies. To face up the challenges
     Disinvestment is a process of selling government
                                                                                 the existing S s needed new ind of technological,
     equities in public sector enterprises. Disinvestment                        managerial and mar eting strategies similar to the
                                                                                 private companies). For all such preparations there
       37.  First of the series of such suggestions came from Sach,              was a requirement of huge capital. The government
            Varshney and Bajpai, India in the Era of Economic                    thought to partly fund the required capital out of the
            Reforms, p. 24).                                                     proceeds of disinvestment of the S s. n this way
       38.  It should be noted that ‘reform with the human                       disinvestment should be viewed in India as a way of
            face’ was not a new slogan or call given y the            A          increasing investment in the divested S s which we
              overnment ut this was the same slogan with which                   see taking place in the cases of BALCO, VSNL, etc.).
            the reform programme was launched by the Rao-                 42.    Right since 1991 when disinvestment began,
               anmohan overnment in                   it has only een            governments have been using the disinvestment
            ‘re-called back’ by the new government with a new                    proceeds to manage fiscal deficits in the budget at
            committment to live it up.                                           least up to           . rom           to          some
       39.  Point should be noted that Bharat Niraman has been the               of the proceeds went for some social sector reforms
            only time-bound programme of infrastructure building                 or for la our security. After          ndia esta lished
            in rural areas which is supposed to be completed within              National Investment Fund to which the proceeds of
            four years the time left out of the total term of the                disinvestment automatically ow and is not regarded as
              overnment when the programme was launched . he                     a capital receipt of the nion overnment. his idea of
                A naturally, tries to ma e it a political statement and          Indian experiment with disinvestment was articulated
            a point for the next eneral lections development                     by Sach, Varshney and Bajpai, India in the Era of
            becoming an issue of real politics.                                  Economic Reforms, pp.            .