Niti Aayog's revised GDP numbers are a joke: Chidambaram

Mr Chidambaram said Niti Aayog had nothing to do with tabulation of data and wondered if Niti Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar would agree to a debate the data. 

Published: 29th November 2018 01:04 AM  |   Last Updated: 29th November 2018 05:16 PM   |  A+A-

P Chidambaram

Former Finance Minister P Chidambaram (Photo| PTI)

By UNI

NEW DELHI: Slamming the back series GDP data released by the NDA government on Wednesday as a 'hatchet job', senior congress leader and former Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram on Wednesday said the revised GDP numbers released by the Niti Aayog were a 'joke'.

He said the new data undermined the NSC (National Statistical Commission), the autonomous body for deciding data transparently and in accordance with global standards of calculating GDP as per Market Price Linked Methodology.

''Niti Aayog's revised GDP numbers are a joke. They are a bad joke. Actually they are worse than a bad joke. The numbers are the result of a hatchet job. Now that Niti Aayog has done the hatchet job, it is time to wind up the utterly worthless body,'' Mr Chidambaram said in a series of tweets.

ALSO READ: Government's official backseries data lowers GDP growth rates for the UPA regime

Mr Chidambaram said the new data undermined the NSC (National Statistical Commission), the autonomous body for deciding data transparently and in accordance with global standards of calculating GDP as per Market Price Linked Methodology.

''The earlier numbers were calculated by the National Statistical Commission. Has the Commission been disbanded?,'' he said.

Mr Chidambaram said Niti Aayog had nothing to do with tabulation of data and wondered if Niti Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar would agree to a debate the data.  ''Former Chief Statistician Pranab Sen is absolutely correct. Niti Aayog has nothing to do with tabulation of data. wonder if Niti Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar will agree to a debate the data than telling journalists that their questions are "undeserving of an answer,''Mr Chidambaram said.

The government on Wednesday released the New back series GDP data which revised down the Gross Domestic Product growth rates for the 2006-2012 period, saying it had recalibrated the data to reflect a more accurate picture of the economy.

In August, the National Statistical Commission had released the back series data-  older GDP data revised in line with the new series- which showed India's economy had grown by over 10 per cent for at least one year when the United Progressive Alliance, led by the Congress, was in power.

After the data released by the National Statistical Commission showed the economy had grown faster during the previous government, the Modi administration issued a clarification saying it was not an official estimate and was only meant to facilitate a decision on the appropriate approach for calculating a back series.

According to the new data released by the Central Statistics Office on Wednesday, the economy grew by 8. 5 per cent in 2010-'11, not by 10. 3 per cent as estimated by the commission.

Back series released today by the CSO has been checked for its methodological soundness by leading statistical experts in the country, NITI Aayog said in a statement.

The government agency said the quality of coverage and methodology were ensured by experts who participated in two round tables it had organised.

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