Attacking the Narendra Modi-led government at the Centre, former prime minister Manmohan Singh on Friday said that the hasty implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) has hurt enterprises and businesses. “Programs like Make in India and Standup India are yet to make a meaningful impact on industrial production growth. Small and marginal enterprises are yet to derive significant benefit from the ease of doing business schemes,” Manmohan Singh was quoted as saying by ANI.
Taking on the central government over the promise of creating two crore jobs every year, Singh said, “Our youth are desperately waiting for the promised two crore jobs. Employment growth rate has been declining in the last four years. People aren’t impressed with the figures being put out by Modi govt to justify the creation of large number of jobs.”
Manmohan Singh’s response comes just days after the government data showed the Indian economy grew at a 15-quarter high of 8.2 per cent in the April-June quarter of the current fiscal.
Senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal said that Modi charged the UPA government of policy paralysis but the same paralysis has rocketed the GDP to 8.2 per cent. “I assume there’s no policy paralysis today.” Referring to demonetisation, Sibal stepped up his attack on the centre and said, “had it been any other country Modi would have had to resign.” He also questioned the PM, “what has he done for 4 years, in terms of economic growth, liberalisation?”
The Reserve Bank of India had recently said that nearly all of the money withdrawn from circulation following demonetisation about 21 months ago has returned to the banking system. Stating that the country paid a huge price for demonetisation, former finance minister Chidambaram said, “Over 100 lives were lost. 15 crore daily wage earners lost their livelihood for several weeks. Thousands of SME units were shut down. Lakhs of jobs were destroyed. Indian economy lost 1.5 per cent of GDP in terms of growth. That alone was a loss of Rs 2.25 lakh crore a year.”