New Delhi: Senior Congress leader P. Chidambaram on Friday said Union Minister Jayant Sinha's article "New economy for New India" reads like a release of the government's Press Information Bureau and that administrative changes were not structural reforms.
In a series of tweets, Chidambaram, a former Union Finance Minister, posed several questions and asked if Sinha was right why GDP had steadily declined over five quarters.
"Jayant Sinha's article in ToI reads like a PIB press release. He should know that administrative changes are not structural reforms."
"If Jayant Sinha is right, why is the outcome a steady decline in GDP growth over 5 quarters?"
"If Jayant Sinha is right, why is there no increase in private investment?"
"If Jayant Sinha is right, why is credit growth to industry negative?"
"If Jayant Sinha is right, why is there poor demand for electricity and plant load factor at 50-60 per cent?"Chidambaram said.
In his article in The Times of India, Jayant Sinha, who is Union Minister of State for Civil Aviation, said many articles written recently had drawn sweeping conclusions from a narrow set of facts and miss the fundamental structural reforms "that are transforming the economy".
"GST, demomentisation and digital payments are game-changing efforts to formalise India's economy," he wrote in the article.
Jayant Sinha's article came a day after his father and senior BJP leader Yashwant Sinha wrote a searing critique of the Narendra Modi government's handling of economy.
Yashwant Sinha had said in his article in The Indian Express said that sector after sector of the economy was in distress and the November 8 demonetisation had proved to be an "unmitigated economic disaster". The government had rejected his criticism.
Chidambaram had held a press conference on Thursday and warmly applaud Yashwant Sinha's article.
He also said Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley must bear responsibility for slowdown in the economy and urged the the Indian industry to speak up about the "policy paralysis."