As the Indian economy aims to grow at a faster pace than other emerging markets, finance ministrer Arun Jaitley highlighted the need for strengthening social security apparatus in the country to make India a pensioned and an insured society.
Speaking at the Diamond Jubilee celebration event of the Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) of India in Mumbai, Jaitley said, “As the economy grows faster, I hope we will become a fully insured and socially secured nation over the years, and I am sure LIC can play a very big role in achieving this.” The minister lamented that we still have not fully realized the importance of adequate social security. Taking a potshot at central trade unions that have called for a national strike on Friday to protest against labour reforms, Jaitley said that a proposal made in the Budget aimed at creating a pensioned society had to be rolled back following unanimous opposition by workers unions.
Jaitley also laid emphasis on the importance of low cost life insurance, low premium accident insurance policies, crop insurance scheme to protect farmers, health insurance scheme for poor and senior citizens, terming them as essential instruments of social security.
Praising Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) for remaining the market leader with over 70 percent market even after competition was allowed 16 years ago, Jaitley said, “I am glad that very few monopolistic institutions of the state have prospered in a competitive market environment and still continues to remain the market leader as LIC has done over the years.” The finance minister also said that health ministry is working on a plan to offer a health cover of Rupees1 lakh (US$ 1500 approx) to the poor.