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People need to embrace economic nationalism: Jagdeep Dhankhar

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New Delhi, Jan 18 (PTI) Vice-President Jagdeep Dhankhar on Thursday said people need to believe in economic nationalism and embrace the concept of Vocal for Local as propounded by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

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Addressing a SCOPE award function, Dhankhar wondered why the country should be importing items like earthen lamps, candles, curtains and furniture, that can be manufactured locally.

"Time has come when as Indians we must believe in economic nationalism. Our country is being bled because of imported items that we can make here. We are not respecting the concept of Vocal for Local. Being Vocal for Local as indicated by the Prime Minister encapsulates the essence of economic nationalism," he added.

Expressing his anguish over the use of ignorance of people for political benefit, the Vice-President said "If informed minds, sensible minds, whom we regard well, trade on ignorance of the people, it is antithetical to morality, ethics and an injustice to the nation".

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The public sector is the country's pride and the spine of the Indian economy, he said, adding "I want the people at large, particularly the corporate sector to know it. We need to give recognition to the public sector, its human resource -- that is long overdue." He stressed that the public sector stands for profit and people have misconceptions and associate the public sector with liability. Profit is in the form of massive contribution in societal upliftment, he added.

He said that the rich human resources of the public sector enabled opening of a large number of bank accounts of the general public resulting in seamless transfer of direct benefit to farmers and other poor segments.

Expressing confidence in the potential and capability of the public sector, Dhankhar exhorted the public sector to make full use of emerging and disruptive technologies like artificial intelligence and quantum computing.

Stressing on the importance of technology for the security and development of the nation, the Vice-President said "Research and development will define how strong a nation will be and how secure a nation will be".

He exhorted the public sector to invest in research and development and handhold the institutions in this regard. PTI RSN NKD DRR

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