News / Asia

Indian PM Vows 'Serious' Action Against Corruption

In this, Feb. 1, 2011 file photo, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh gestures during a conference on internal security, New Delhi, India.
In this, Feb. 1, 2011 file photo, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh gestures during a conference on internal security, New Delhi, India.

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is making a public outreach to get his country’s parliament moving again after months of gridlock.

In a nationally televised news conference, he vowed action against corruption and urged media organizations to steer away from coverage that lowers the nation’s self-image.

The prime minister chastised senior television journalists, mainly from domestic organizations, Wednesday, suggesting sensationalized coverage of scandals has lowered the nation’s self-esteem.

"An impression has gone around that we are a scam-driven country," he said. "In the process, willy-nilly.. we are weakening the self-confidence of the people of India."

Mr. Singh’s Congress party has faced withering public criticism in recent months for allegedly being lax on widespread corruption, particularly in connection with the sale of 2G mobile phone frequency licenses more than two years ago.

The Indian parliament has been deadlocked for months, with opposition parties demanding a joint probe by lawmakers into the 2G issue and other alleged mishandling of public funds. The stalemate may impede a budget session scheduled for next week.

Mr. Singh told chief editors of India’s main TV networks, he would be willing to appear before any committee and vowed his government will not tolerate corruption at any level.

"Our government is dead serious about bringing to book all the wrong-doers, regardless of their position... if there is corruption, whether it is in the judiciary, or in the executive, or other walks of life, we must get rid of that," he said.

Mr. Singh promised a reshuffle of his cabinet within a few months. He said the government deserves credit for improving India’s security situation, and promised impressive economic numbers next month.

"We will have a growth rate of 8.5% this fiscal year... the inflation rate should come down to no more than seven percent."

Separately, the prime minister expressed his support for pro-democracy activists in Egypt.

"They have our good wishes," he said. "Though it is not our business to advise other countries, we welcome the dawn of democracy everywhere."

At the same time, the he ruled out the likelihood of a similar mass movement in his own country.

"India is a functioning democracy. People already have a right to change government. We have a free press... and therefore, there is no question that things that have happened in Egypt or in other Arab countries can be replicated in India."

Prime Minister Singh, now 78 years old, dismissed speculation he may step aside before his government expires in 2014, saying he has a job to do and plans to stay the course.

You May Like

US Firms Concerned About China's New Cyber Regulations

New rules would require technology companies doing business in financial sector to hand over their source code, adopt Chinese encryption algorithms More

WHO Focus on Ebola Shifts to Ending Outbreak

Focus to be less on building facilities and more on efforts to find infected people, manage their cases, engage with communities and ensure proper burials More

US Scientist Who Conceived of Groundbreaking Laser Technology Dies

Charles Townes, Nobel laureate, laser co-creator paved way for other scientific discoveries: CDs, eye surgery, metal cutters to name a few technologies that rely on lasers More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Super Bowl Ads Compete for Eyes on TV, Webi
X
January 29, 2015 9:58 AM
Super Bowl Sunday (Feb. 1) is about more than just the NFL's American football championship and big parties to watch the game. Viewers also tune in for the world famous commercials that send Facebook and Twitter abuzz. Daniela Schrier reports on the social media rewards for America’s priciest advertising.
Video

Video Super Bowl Ads Compete for Eyes on TV, Web

Super Bowl Sunday (Feb. 1) is about more than just the NFL's American football championship and big parties to watch the game. Viewers also tune in for the world famous commercials that send Facebook and Twitter abuzz. Daniela Schrier reports on the social media rewards for America’s priciest advertising.
Video

Video Theologians Cast Doubt on Morality of Drone Strikes

In 2006, stirred by photos of U.S. soldiers mistreating Iraqi prisoners, a group of American faith leaders and academics launched the National Religious Campaign Against Torture. It played an important role in getting Congress to investigate, and the president to ban, torture. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Freedom on Decline Worldwide, Report Says

The state of global freedom declined for the ninth consecutive year in 2014, according to global watchdog Freedom House's annual report released Wednesday. VOA's William Gallo has more.
Video

Video As Ground Shifts, Obama Reviews Middle East Strategy

The death of Saudi Arabia’s king, the collapse of a U.S.-friendly government in Yemen and a problematic relationship with Israel’s leadership are presenting a new set of complications for the Obama administration and its Middle East policy. Not only is the U.S. leader dealing with adversaries in Iran, the Islamic State and al-Qaida, but he is now juggling trouble with traditional allies, as White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video MRI Seems to Help Diagnose Prostate Cancer, Preliminary Study Shows

Just as with mammography used to detect breast cancer, there's a lot of controversy about tests used to diagnose prostate cancer. Fortunately, a new study shows doctors may now have a more reliable way to diagnose prostate cancer for high risk patients. More from VOA's Carol Pearson.
Video

Video Smartphones About to Make Leap, Carry Basic Senses

Long-distance communication contains mostly sounds and pictures - for now. But scientists in Britain say they are close to creating additions for our smartphones that will make it possible to send taste, smell and even a basic touch. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video NASA Monitors Earth’s Vital Signs From Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, is wrapping up its busiest 12-month period in more than a decade, with three missions launched in 2014 and two this month, one in early January and the fifth scheduled for January 29. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, the instruments being lifted into orbit are focused on Earth’s vital life support systems and how they are responding to a warmer planet.
Video

Video Saved By a Mistake - an Auschwitz Survivor's Story

Dagmar Lieblova was 14 when she arrived at Auschwitz in December 1943, along with her entire Czech Jewish family. All of them were to die there, but she was able to leave after several months due to a bureaucratic mix-up which saved her life. Now 85, with three children and six grandchildren, she says she has a feeling of victory. This report by Ahmad Wadiei and Farin Assemi, of RFE/RL's Radio Farda is narrated by RFE’s Raymond Furlong.

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

All About America

AppleAndroid