Photo: HT
Photo: HT

Government is planning to put 98% of sectors, which are open to foreign investments, under the automatic route so that businessmen won’t need to visit the Finance Ministry or ‘Udyog Bhavan’ for any approval, a top official said on Tuesday.

“We are putting maximum sectors (of FDI) through automatic route. Our belief is that nobody should come to government. So we get 92% of FDI coming through automatic route. We are targeting that almost 97-98% must come through automatic route.

“We do not want any businessman to enter Udyog Bhavan (the Commerce and Industry Ministry building), we do not want any businessman to enter the Finance Ministry,” Secretary in the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) Amitabh Kant said here at a function.

As per the FDI policy, foreign investments are allowed either under automatic route or through the approval of FIPB, which is under the Finance Ministry.

He also said that the government is taking several steps to improve ease of doing business both at the central and state level to attract foreign investors.

“States must become easy and simple place to do business. My belief is that if we are able to get 10-12 states as champions of growth. If 12 states grow at a rate of 10% plus, then India would grow at 9 to 10% per annum,” Kant aid.

He said Singapore tops the list of ease of doing business index so “we need 10-12 Singapores in India. If we are able to get 12 champions, India will grow and boom and create jobs”.

He said that this year the DIPP has given 340 points to the sates to work on and on this basis the states would be ranked in terms of ease of doing business.

Turning to the debate on intolerance, he said: “It is not about saying that we are tolerant or intolerant. This is our India, we have to make this. If we don’t make this India, who will make. We must have a sense of pride, we must have a sense of ownership of India”.

Actor Aamir Khan has joined the outcry against intolerance, saying he was “alarmed” by a number of incidences and his wife Kiran Rao even suggested that they should probably leave the country.

“To my mind, essential transformation is about people…we are at a cusp of a change and people of India must rise to this occasion and people must have an ownership and pride about India. Its not about somebody else’s India,” he added.

Further he said foreign companies are showing faith on the Indian leadership and are showing keen interest in investing in India.

“The time is now, the opportunity is now. All of you (Indian industry) must seek that opportunity…leadership must emerge from Indian companies, they must become the key champions of growth,” Kant said.