Modi government has made economy sluggish: Congress
New Delhi: The Congress on Monday accused the Narendra Modi government of turning India’s economy from the “fastest growing” into a “sluggish and stagnating” one, and said growth and investment rates have seen a decline.
Talking to reporters here, Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi also hit out at BJP National President Amit Shah.
He said Shah’s efforts to place Prime Minister “Modi’s economic integration” at the same pedestal as “Sardar Patel’s political integration and Babasaheb Ambedkar’s social integration was a contemptuous insult to our founding fathers and a pathetic attempt to paint black into white”.
Singhvi said the Bharatiya Janata Party-led government has derailed the economy by its “disastrous decision making”.
Demonetisation had hit the economy adversely and the Goods and Services Tax was rolled out in a “bad and hurried” manner, affecting many industries as also the manufacturing sector, he said.
Singhvi said the BJP suffers from “false bravado and loud boasting” and has shut its eyes to reality.
Amit Shah has attributed the plummeting of the gross domestic product (GDP) to “technical reasons” but for people the reason is “complete economic mismanagement”, he said.
The Congress spokesperson said demonetisation, carried out in November last year, has shaved two per cent off the GDP and the government does not appear to have a clue to check the down-slide.
Stressing that job creation remains “the single biggest failure” of this government, he said 33,000 young people were entering the job market every day but the BJP government has been able to create only 500 jobs per day.
“A million new people entering the labour force every month. The labour bureau data shows that job creation is at the lowest in eight years,” he said.
Singhvi said lack of jobs creates dissatisfaction and that, in turn, can create social tensions and added that the promise of creating two crore jobs per year remains “a distant illusion.”
About farmers, he said they have been affected by the Modi government’s “complete apathy”. “They are not being provided with an appropriate rate for their produce, supply chains are being dismantled and suggestions under the Swaminathan Report are not being implemented.”
“The much publicized Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana is benefiting enlisted private players at the expense of the hardworking farmers.”
Singhvi said private investment was also not driving growth and the Gross Fixed Capital Formation was falling.
In 2013-14, he said, exports had risen to $314 billion registering a compound annual growth rate of 17.3 per cent. “In the last three years under the NDA government, exports have remained far below the peak — $310 billion, $262 billion and $276 billion.”
The Congress leader said Retail Inflation and Wholesale Price Index had risen, adversely affecting the domestic budgets and the high prices of petroleum products was also hitting the common man.
Singhvi said that despite rising costs in China, India has made little headway in becoming an alternative manufacturing destination, particularly at the low end that generates the most jobs.
“Textiles and clothing jobs from China are moving to Myanmar, Cambodia and Bangladesh, while Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia are gaining in electronics production,” he said.
Singhvi said ratings agency Crisil has estimated stressed assets in the banking system to be around Rs 11.5 lakh crore, or nearly 14 per cent of the total advances, and it does not expect this number to increase significantly over the medium term.
The Congress leader said Crisil expects gross non-performing assets in the banking system to be around 10.5 per cent of advances as of March 2018, up from 9.5 per cent as of March 2017.
Referring to a report of the State Level Banker’s Committee (SLBC), he said rising bad loans in the medium, small and micro enterprises and agriculture have adversely affected the performance of banks in the state.
The quantum of bad loans registered in Gujarat has increased by 2.5 times, Singhvi said.