The Congress on Wednesday took on Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman for her remarks that young people’s propensity to prefer radio taxis over buying cars is among the reasons that has contributed to the slowdown in the automobile sector, saying that she blames everyone except the ruling BJP for the handling of the economy.
Senior Congress leader Abhishek Singhvi said: “This remarkable, unbelievable statement by the Finance Minister of India reflects the inefficiency, immaturity and inexperience —- the three I’s, as Shri (Prime Minister Narendra) Modi would say of the BJP in governance. The gross overstatement made by the Finance Minister is a grave joke on the economy, on the country. Why? Because the dip in GDP is the real new normal for this government.”
He said the “logic of the Finance Minister on economic slowdown, if applied to 10 questions in 10 sectors, 10 issues, will make it comical, though of course it is tragic for the nation.”
Sitharaman had on Tuesday said: “The automobile and components industry has been affected by BS-VI (Bharat Stage VI) [norms] and the mindsets of millennial, who now prefer to have Ola and Uber rather than committing to buying an automobile.”
Singhvi on Wednesday asked whether, in similar vein, landlords and the millennial generation, who by similar logic would rent homes than buying them, are responsible for the downturn in the real estate sector, and whether the money “overspent by spendthrift overspending homemakers leading to an imbalance in the economy’s balancesheet”.
Singhvi said the slowdown in GDP growth is “not our fault, is not the Finance Ministry’s fault, not the Prime Minister’s, government’s fault…it is because researchers who keep recalculating these figures, whether in the Budget or in the Economic Survey, keep changing methodologies and keep confusing us”.
The Congress party took a jibe at the government in on Twitter, stating, “Despite their promise of protecting wealth creators, the government’s disastrous policies have wiped away Rs 12.5 lakh crore of investor wealth in the last 100 days. Unlike the FM’s excuses, these are the real reasons for it: Demonetisation, GST, Tax Terrorism.”