Human challenges have become global, responses remain national: PM


New Delhi : Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Friday said while all human challenges have become “global”, the responses were “national or, at best, regional”.

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The prime minister was speaking at a conference here on “Freedom, Development and Welfare”, convened in honour of Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen.

“All human challenges today have become global challenges. The unfortunate fact is that while our problems have become global, our responses remain national or, at best, regional. One reason for this could be the inherent weakness of global institutions,” he said.

Manmohan Singh’s remarks come at a time when the world economy is witnessing recessionary trends and terrorism is casting its shadow globally.

“I am often amazed by the jealousy with which nations guard their control over international institutions even as they speak of the virtues of globalization and democracy. The time has come for the global polity to catch up with the times and address the challenges posed by the global economy,” he told a gathering of intellectuals.

While calling for a global effort to respond to the challenges posed by the economy, Manmohan Singh said: “India consists of over a billion people, seeking their social upliftment, their political empowerment and their economic betterment within the framework of a liberal, a plural and a secular democracy. This is a truly remarkable endeavour by any measure.”

Manmohan Singh, however, assured the country that the government would strive to deliver the expectations of the people.

“Even as we urge the global community to recognize the global nature of the challenges we face, and urge them to work with us, we assure the world and our own people that we will not be found wanting as a nation in addressing the challenges at hand. Good governance, development and security are the least we can deliver to our people.”

Dwelling on the response of the developed countries to global problems like financial crisis, climate change and terrorism, Manmohan Singh stressed that the response has shown that they “have no monopoly of world good ideas”.

“We in the developing world wish to work with the developed, but we have to find our own ways to deal with these challenges. The imperatives of development, of the well-being of our people, and the logic of democratic politics dictate all this. We are, after all, answerable to our people,” the prime minister emphasised.