THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Kerala's enviable achievements in social development did not result in corresponding economic growth, Opposition Leader V S Achuthanandan said on Saturday.
Addressing the International Congress on Kerala Studies organised by the CPM here on Saturday, Achuthanandan said the change in governments, globalisation and neo-liberal policies deprived the state of the benefits of the Left's landmark initiatives.
"Though the state achieved commendable development in the education sector, the industries sector did not grow. This resulted in huge unemployment and worsened economic crisis. In short, the development in the social sector did not result in corresponding economic growth or productivity," he said.
The state's shift towards a consumer state resulted in reclamation of farm lands and mushrooming of skyscrapers. Paddy cultivation shrunk from 15 lakh hectares in the 1970s to 2.5 lakh hectares at present.
Achuthanandan said the state should lay focus on small-scale industries in the wake of shortage of land, high population density and environment issues.
He called for increasing electricity generation, scientific development of roads and curbing illegal mining and other activities that destroyed environment.