The 1990s was momentous in the economic history of India as it witnessed a successful transition of India from a controlled, inward-looking, and slow growing economy to a liberalized and open economy that has now found a place amongst the fastest growing economies in the world.
Economic reforms, though slowed down lately, are aimed at reorientation of the centrally-controlled economy to a market-oriented one in order to foster greater efficiency and growth. This is being done by introducing greater competition in the economy through progressive internal deregulation accompanied by external competition promoted by foreign direct investment and trade liberalization.
After the reforms, the Indian economy has been growing faster than its historical growth rate. However, the socio-economically disadvantaged are yet to benefit from economic reforms. Hence, inclusive growth-the focus of recently completed Eleventh Five Year Plan (2007-12)-remains the cornerstone of India’s development efforts. Inclusive growth necessarily implies concerted effort, by all levels of government, to invest in the delivery of public services, particularly those which promote progress in social sectors like health and education.