Economic history of India since independence in 1947 can be divided into two parts,viz pre-P.V.Narasimha Rao period and post P.V.Narasimha Rao period. The pre Narasimha Rao period was marked by,government’s control over economy, nationalization of private companies and banks etc, slow economic development, heavy borrowings from foreign countries and international organisations, grants from developed countries, competition with other developing countries for getting foreign grants and loans etc. The importance of a bureaucrat/Minister was judged by his ability to negotiate loans and grants from foreign countries. The private sector was seen as villains and it was a fashion with economists and some politicians to condemn private sector. This period saw very slow or negative growth in real terms. Indians professionals, government officials, tourists, businessmen etc. were treated very badly by foreign countries. They were not welcome in most countries.The quality of Indian products was very poor and these were sold in foreign countries for very low prices.
The liberalization/globalization of the Indian economy by Narasimha Rao saw the government treating private sector as partners in economic development of the country, removing some restrictions and controls on private sector. However, the government appeared to depend on foreign companies for industrializing the country. The governments of different political parties- United Front, NDA, and Congress which followed Rao’s governmernt, implemented some of the projects(roads for example) initiated by him and followed all his liberalization policies. The present government also follows Rao’s government.policies.
Today. foreign countries including developed countries seek Indian investment in their countries, Indian governments extend loans and grants to several countries, many countries are competing with each other to attract Indian tourists, issue of visas by foreign governments to Indians has been liberalized. In this connection, it is recalled that a foreign embassy in a third country wanted to interview a member of the family of Indian VVIP before issuing visa. Of course finally visa was issued without interview.
Of cource, Rao’s policy initiatives coincided with the collapse of communism in most of the countries.
Rao’s birthday should be celebrated all over the country suitably