Economy is bad, 5% growth estimate 'imaginary': Former Union finance minister Sinha

India's GDP growth is seen dipping to an 11-year low of 5 per cent in the current fiscal, mainly due to poor showing by the manufacturing and construction sectors, government data showed .

Published: 08th January 2020 11:02 PM  |   Last Updated: 08th January 2020 11:02 PM   |  A+A-

Former Union Minister Yashwant Sinha

Former Union Minister Yashwant Sinha (File Photo | EPS)

By PTI

MUMBAI: Former Union finance minister Yashwant Sinha on Wednesday questioned estimation that the economy will grow at 5 per cent in 2019-20, saying the figure is "imaginary" and raised doubt about the Modi government's capability of tackling economic issues.

Talking to reporters, Sinha also demurred Prime Minister Narendra Modi holding "pre-budget consultation", saying it is "unprecedented" and asked what the latter's Finance Minister is doing.

India's GDP growth is seen dipping to an 11-year low of 5 per cent in the current fiscal, mainly due to poor showing by the manufacturing and construction sectors, government data showed on Tuesday.

"Even this 5 per cent growth is imaginary.

Because this does not include what has happened, the damage which was caused as a result of demonetisation and GST on the MSME and the informal sector," Sinha told reporters here.

The former Union finance minister said several economists are suggesting that India is experiencing negative growth if the factors caused by demonetisation and GST are to be kept in mind.

The economic situation is "too bad", he added.

"You (reporter) talked about budget. The budget has lost all its meaning. The budget has lost its sanctity which was there at some point of time," he said while replying to a query.

"I have grave doubts about the capability of this government to tackle economic issues," the former BJP leader added.

Sinha said there is no magic wand to correct the course of economy and added there is a need for sustained effort to put things on track.

"But frankly, I don't expect anything much from the government either before or after," he said.

Sinha further said earlier budgets were worked out in the finance ministry and noted it was "unprecedented" for the prime minister to hold pre-budget consultations.

"But where it (the budget) is being made today I don't know. But they have the mouthpiece who will read out the budget in the Lok Sabha," he said.

Former Maharashtra Chief Minister and Congress leader Prithviraj Chavan, who accompanied Sinha, said the plunging economic numbers are a "matter of grave concern".

He said former Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramanian had last year talked about GDP growth rates being inflated by 2.5 per cent.

"That is a condition and it is not 5 per cent, it is 2.5 per cent," he said about the estimates.

Chavan accused the Modi government of not consulting experts during a crisis situation and said the issues of CAA and NRC are being raised to distract people's attention from economic woes.

Stay up to date on all the latest Nation news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp