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The Great Indian Growth Puzzle

India is a fast train hurtling towards its destination - a $5 trillion economy. It's an impressive sight, with every milestone celebrated. But as we cheer for the speed, we must ask ourselves: Are all passengers comfortable? Is everyone enjoying the journey equally?

On one side, we have glittering skyscrapers and burgeoning tech parks. India is harnessing solar and wind energy like never before, with ambitious strides towards a cleaner future. There's no doubt; we're moving fast.

But as we look around, we see another side. While some pockets of the nation bask in prosperity, many are left in the shadows. The wealth, it seems, is filling the coffers of a select few, while the rest of the population is only catching the crumbs.

The Duality of Growth

According to Policy Circle, India's economy is set to grow at a rate exceeding 7%, propelled by advancements in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and a robust renewable energy sector​​. This growth is underpinned by significant infrastructure development, with public sector capital investment tripling from FY15 to FY24​​. Despite these impressive figures, a stark contrast emerges when we delve deeper into the distribution of this wealth.

India's GDP is growing strong, but the average person isn't feeling the growth in their daily lives. It's a bit like having a big family dinner where only a few get the feast, and the rest are left hungry. Fortune India points out that while GDP has grown at an average rate of 5.8% during FY15-FY24, per capita GDP growth lags behind at 4.5% for FY15-FY23​​. 

This indicates that the growth experienced by India is not uniformly distributed among its citizens, with the benefits disproportionately accruing to the wealthier sections of society.

The World Inequality Database (WID) illustrates that the top 1% and top 10% of India's population have seen their income shares consistently increase, while the bottom 50%'s share has declined, particularly after 1991​​. 

Furthermore, the India Forum reports that wealth accumulation among the richest decile has seen negative growth, highlighting the paradox of rising wealth amidst growing inequality​​.

A Way Forward

For India to harness the full potential of its growth, it must address the widening economic divide. This involves a multifaceted approach that includes:

  • Skilling and Education: Upskilling the workforce to prepare for the jobs of tomorrow, especially in the face of AI and automation.

  • Inclusive Policies: Crafting policies that ensure growth benefits are more evenly distributed among different segments of society.

  • Sustainable Development: Balancing economic expansion with environmental sustainability and social welfare.

Subsidies and government spending are meant to offer a helping hand, but they come at a cost. If not balanced wisely, they could lead to increased debt without genuinely helping those in need.

The true mark of progress isn't just the size of the economy, but how well everyone is doing. As we race towards our economic goals, we must bring everyone along for the ride. This means investing in skills, businesses and education for all, ensuring that economic policies are fair, and building a sustainable future that considers the well-being of every citizen.

India's growth story is both inspiring and cautionary. The narrative of a fast-growing economy must not overshadow the critical need for equitable and inclusive growth. As the nation forges ahead, the true measure of its success will not be in the magnitude of its GDP but in the well-being of its citizens. You can Invest in India’s growth story at

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1 Comment

So true and the attack on farmers, who are in the bottom 40% of income and who are asking for implementation of Swaminathan's MSP for all crops, not just wheat and rice, will make the bottom 40% even more poor.

It is a deliberate distraction to give Swaminthan a Bharat Ratna while ignoring his recommendations.

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