PM Modi, Sitharaman mute spectators of economic crisis: Congress

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on August 23, 2019 Published on August 23, 2019

Congress Leader Manish Tewari   -  K_MURALI_KUMAR

The Centre’s assurance that measures are being taken to address the concerns of the industry failed to satisfy the Opposition, which said that the crisis in economy is much deeper than what is being shown.

The Congress said Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman have been mute spectators when the crisis unfolded in the economy, the Left parties said millions of livelihoods have been destroyed in the last few weeks.

Senior Congress leader and MP Manish Tewari told reporters here on Friday Vice-Chairperson of the Niti Aayog Rajiv Kumar deserves to be congratulated for his confession. “He says the current stress in the financial sector is unprecedented. It’s not just the financial sector, it’s the Indian economy. The current situation in the economy is unprecedented, something of the sort has not been seen in the past 70 years,” said Tewari.

He said the silence of Modi and Sitharaman is deafening when the economy entered its choppiest phase in history. “All you see is deflection, politics of vendetta, and undeclared Emergency across the country,” he said. He added that the primary reason for the crisis is that the Centre has no clue on how to handle the crisis in the economy which is intensifying everyday. “Much that the BJP-NDA government would like us to believe that this is because of Jawaharlal Nehru — unfortunately that is not the case.” Tewari added.

Rising unemployment

He said that over three crore people are currently facing a threat of becoming unemployed. “Every sector is under grave stress. Textile industry has been putting out advertisements daily for past one week, explaining that this is perhaps the worst period which the industry has seen in the past seven decades” said Tewari.

He added, “Tea industry is facing an unprecedented crisis, and even inner-wear industry. Greenspan, ex-chairperson of the Federal Reserve in USA, created Greenspan index, which premised that if there is a crisis in inner-wear industry, means the economy is on the brink of implosion.”

Rupee crash

He also cited the reports that biscuit manufacturer Parle has announced that they will lay off 10,000 people. “The rupee, as of today morning, crashed to 72 against the dollar, making it the worst performing currency in Asia. Yesterday (Thursday) alone, FIIs pulled out ₹902.99 crore from equity market. It rarely happens that money is pulled out of equity market, which index the long term stability of an economy. The growth of the economy has slowed down to 5.7 per cent, the worst performance in the past five years, and this is 5.7 per cent with 2011-2012 as the base year,” he said.

The former minister said the crisis in the automobile sector is very well documented. “A total of 3,50,000 people stand retrenched in the auto sector. Maruti Suzuki alone has cut its production by 25 per cent for the sixth consecutive month. There is a shadow banking crisis because of insecurities, private consumption is at a historic low, and private consumption constitutes 60 per cent of the GDP,” he warned.

CPI(M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury said, “The government is busy pretending that all is well.”

He said, “Forget the government spin. But when Niti Aayog Chief and two members of the PM’s Economic Advisory Council go public with the alarming situation in the economy, it is a crisis of deep confidence in this government. Is anyone responsible on top even listening to their own appointees?”

Published on August 23, 2019
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