Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday attacked the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government and said its 'policy paralysis' was leading the country towards stagnation and negative growth.
"Centre's policy paralysis leading country towards stagnation and negative growth, which will not help the nation," Modi told reporters on the sidelines of the National Development Council (NDC) meeting in New Delhi.
"The last time we met, they spoke of 9% growth but we are still stuck at 7%. A nation like us is aspiring only for 0.3% growth? " Modi said.
In his speech at the meeting, the senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader said: "It seems that there is no urgency or seriousness in tackling economic crises facing the country. There has been a virtual lack of direction in the macro-economic management of the country."
Speaking at the meeting, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Thursday urged all chief ministers of India to wake up to the growing attack on women in public places and address the issue of their safety.
With the country in anger and on protest mode over the gangrape and brutalization of a Delhi medical student who is fighting for her life, the Prime Minister said women form half the population and without their participation there can be no meaningful development.
"There can be no meaningful development without the active participation of half the population and this participation simply cannot take place if their security and safety are not assured. I urge all Chief Ministers to pay special attention to this critical area in their states," said the PM at the meeting of the National Development Council attended by all chief ministers here.
Harping on gender inequality, the PM said: "Women and girls represent half the population and our society has not been fair to this half. Their socio-economic status is improving, but gaps persist."
Earlier in the day, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa walked out of the meeting when she was stopped from delivering her speech in full owing to time limits of ten minutes set for each CM.
The Tamil Nadu chief minister left in a huff saying she was insulted since it is impossible to express everything in ten minutes in the interest of her state and the country at large.
"I had barely began my speech when I was told that my ten minutes are up as a bell rang. This is utter humiliation of a Chief Minister who has come all the way to Delhi," said Jayalalithaa.
"It is impossible to convey the news of the news in ten minutes," said Jayalalithaa.
"There have been many occasions before when chief ministers who support the central government have been allowed to speak," said Jayalalithaa.
She said the voices of the chief ministers are being stifled by the centre.
Jayalalithaa´s own speech that she was not fully allowed to deliver was full of criticism of the central government for its "undemocratic" approach to the state.