NEW DELHI: The opposition squarely blamed the Narendra Modi government for the massive GDP slide, with senior leaders claiming that the Centre remained blind to the stuttering economy. According to former finance minister P Chidambaram, first quarter GDP declining by a whopping 23.9 per cent should be a matter of shame to the government that did nothing to cushion the fall by taking suitable fiscal and welfare measures.
“The estimates do not come as a surprise. They should be a matter of surprise to the government that was seeing ‘green shoots’ on several days during the first quarter. About one quarter of the gross domestic output as on 30-6-2019 has been wiped out in the last 12 months.
“Another way of looking at it is, since the end of 2019-20, the gross domestic output has fallen by about 20 per cent,” Chidamabaram said, adding, “the Finance Minister who blamed an ‘Act of God’ for the economic decline should be grateful to the farmers and the gods who blessed the farmers.”
The economic tragedy was foretold by many close observers of the Indian economy, most recently by the RBI in its Annual Report, he pointed out. “We had warned the government and we had urged the government to take preventive and pre-emptive measures. Our pleas fell on deaf ears.”
Chidambaram’s party colleague and Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot claimed that the people were bearing the brunt of the government’s inefficieny. “Country’s economy is sinking since long but NDA Govt has not taken any steps to improve situation. All suggestions, warnings ignored completely. People are suffering due to Govt’s inefficiency (sic),” he tweeted.CPI leader D Raja said that the economy was in a poor shape even before the pandemic hit the country.
“Economy is sick and sinking. Only PM and his team do not agree. Even before Covid hit India, economy was in bad shape. Covid has added to that...And, the Finance Minister is talking about Act of God. They don’t want to acknowledge the reality, that is the problem. It is almost recession and there is no possibility of reversing the trend,” the leader said.
No steps for support
Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot claimed that the people were bearing the brunt of the Centre’s inefficieny. “NDA Govt has not taken any steps to improve situation. All warnings ignored,” he said.