New Delhi: The UPA-II government needs course correction in the remaining year of its term, Union Minister and NCP leader Praful Patel said.

‘Cong will lose if LS polls are held now’

"There are definitely issues of perception. The government needs to have a huge course correction in terms of perception," he said as the Manmohan Singh-led UPA-II government completes four years on Wednesday.

The UPA government has to make things happen fast, said the Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises Minister and senior leader of key ally NCP.

"We need to have a quick and decisive government," he said adding that the UPA had "fair" chance of storming back to power. "The Congress needs to get more allies to be able to have that final punch (for 2014 polls),” he said.

56-year-old politician said the UPA-II government had been hit by "couple of big issues". "Issues of corruption have been important to the nation and rightly so. A couple of things happened one after the other and those have created negativity," Patel said.

Patel, who has been elected to Lok Sabha four times and Rajya Sabha twice, said there was need to take some decisions such as those relating to boosting infrastructure and giving fresh impetus to economy, that had been held up. "I am sure when the country does well economically, jobs are created, there is a general sense of well being, people do not necessarily factor negatives which have been highlighted so far," he said.

Patel said several good decisions had been taken and indications were not so bad for the government. "Our economy did not falter the way global economy faltered. Rural economy has picked up. Government has enacted good social legislations," he said. He added that petroleum prices are now coming down.

Asked whether the allegations against the Congress-led government would impact the NCP's prospects, he said perception about the government affects allies as well. On the issue of a prime ministerial candidate for the 2014 elections, he said, was one for the Congress to decide as it was the "principal party of the coalition". "India does not have presidential style polls. Personalities may have an impact but there are issues of states... Congress should take a decision on the issue,” the leader said.

Patel said the Congress and NCP would continue to be allies and fight the next Lok Sabha polls and assembly polls in Maharashtra together. "We have been allies for 13 years in Maharashtra and nine years in Delhi... We need to continue the alliance in larger national interest."


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