PM Modi yesterday stoutly defended his government’s supervision of the economy, pledging to undo a downturn in economic growth.
Modi’s explanation comes at a time when the narrative concerning the economy has turned pessimistic. It is triggered by the economy’s slowest growth in three years all through the three months ended 30th June. It is fanned by analysis of his government by former finance minister Yashwant Sinha as well as former disinvestment minister Arun Shourie, both once leading lights of PM Modi own BJP.
The PM Modi, in a talk at an occasion organised by the Institute of Company Secretaries of India, admitted that economic growth has slowed. But he added that his government is “commits to reversing the trend”.
Lashing out at his government’s reviewer, PM Modi supposed it was fair to criticise the government, but not to spread pessimism.
The lingering outcome of demonetization, the cancellation of old high-value currency notes the previous year, and the expectation of the move to a unified Goods and Services Tax on 1st July, resulted in the economy growing by just 5.7% in the first part of this financial year. The shift to GST on 1 July has also been unruly.
PM Modi fortified demonetization and justified it as being essential to tackle the danger of black money. Almost all the money in circulation previous to demonetisation returned to the banking system, belying initial expectations that a noteworthy proportion of black money would not. But finance minister Arun Jaitley supposed in late August that the aim of the exercise was not “elimination” of black money. “The fact that money gets placed in banks doesn’t formulate it legitimate money”
Terming demonetization as well as GST structural reforms, PM Modi supposed that ” if any sector wants temporary assistance, the government will provide it, whether it is the small and medium enterprise (SME) section, exports or else the informal economy.”
Not only did the Prime Minister insistently join the continuing economic debate in the country, his pledge that the tax authorities would not pursue companies joining the formal economy, mainly under the Goods and Services Tax system, will address concerns of a segment of the industry.
PM Modi supposed “People coming to majority (from the informal economy) panic that their old records may be reopened. We will not let that ensue as earlier their old way of business was necessitated by current circumstances. Nothing is more wicked than blocking those who desire to come to the mainstream. Allow bygones be bygones”.
Modi’s explanation comes in the milieu of concerns flagged by the segment of exporters and small and medium enterprises, stressed to cope with the change to GST.
The Congress, a prominent opponent of the NDA, was unconvinced. “If histrionics plus dramatics could perk up India’s economy and craft Jobs, then Acche Din would have arrived at present” Randeep Surjewala, a senior Congress politician tweeted.