New Delhi: In his first address to captains of Indian industry, Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi called for inclusive growth, and warned repeatedly of the dangers of centralisation of power. In comparing India with China, Mr Gandhi said India was a country with "complexity" and used the analogy of a "beehive".
"China is referred to as the 'dragon' and India as an 'elephant'. But we are not an elephant, we are a 'beehive', " he said. However, he pointed out that unlike a "beehive which gives every member a voice", the system in India is "clogged" and the voices of most people are not heard. He said the answer to these problems lay in empowering the lowest man.
Expanding on the China analogy, Mr Gandhi said the difference lay in how power was applied. "China applies power by hand - they are a manufacturing behemoth. India on the other hand applies people's power - the power of the mind. We have much more power than we think."
His message to India India Inc was simple - 'if you can succeed here, you can succeed anywhere.'
Mr Gandhi said, "Indians are always complaining about something or the other.The reason they are complaining is because they are dealing with extreme complexities. India is complex. China is simple. And that is why India can't give simple answers when the West and other investors demand them. And you, the Indian corporates are the masters of this. You are of the masters of complexities People dealing with simplicities will not win in the long run."
Mr Gandhi's rare public utterances mean that there is a huge interest in what he says when he does speak. His father, grandmother and great-grandfather were prime ministers and his mother, Sonia, heads the Congress Party. The Congress party appointed him vice president in January.
That has led to speculation over a face- with BJP's Narendra Modi, who has been touting his record as chief minister of Gujarat, a state with a booming economy.