He said the Finance Minister should have highlighted the overall issue of energy security for India.

"Should any geo-political developments in the region from where we import the bulk of our oil lead to say a 50 percent increase in oil prices. The effect on the economy could be disastrous," he said.

"Hence, the Finance Minister could have highlighted the objectives of attaining higher energy security, lowering environmental pollution and tackling global climate change through measures to attain higher energy efficiency, greater use of non-fossil energy sources and reducing the rate of growth in demand through promoting public transport and energy efficient buildings," he added.

Pachauri, who is the chairman of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), was speaking at a panel discussion organized by The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI).

The discussion included issues ranging from infrastructure and renewable energy to climate change and sanitation.

Welcoming the government's decision to sanction a sum of Rs 2,037 crore for the Ganga clean-up project, the panel expressed hope that the current government would learn from past mistakes.

"Much of it actually relates to governance, the involvement of the people themselves as communities and the involvement of private players, if necessary, to come together and sort the issue," Pachauri said.

He also welcomed the move to set up a University of Himalayan Studies but remarked that there was a need to make it functional in a ‘networked manner’ which would enable it to utilize existing talent from other institutions instead of simply being a standalone organization.

The panel highlighted the need to develop waterways as a means of ‘highly efficient’ transport, addressing concerns of air pollution that may arise with the cropping up of smart cities.

(Agencies)

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