Tuesday, 17 May, 2022
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Chidambaram lashes out at Modi govt for changing GDP base year to show higher growth

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Congress leader rebuts NITI Aayog vice chairman’s claim that Modi govt has surpassed UPA-era growth despite being handed over economy in bad shape.

New Delhi: Former finance minister and senior Congress leader P. Chidambaram has lashed out at Narendra Modi’s NDA government for changing the base year to show a higher GDP growth rate.

Chidambaram’s statement comes a day after the National Statistical Commission released data showing that the Indian economy achieved a double-digit growth of 10.8 per cent in 2006-07, during the UPA’s first term.

Using this data, Chidambaram rebutted NITI Aayog vice-chairman Rajiv Kumar’s claim that the economy had grown faster under Modi than Manmohan Singh, and that the UPA had forwarded a pernicious legacy of massive bad loans to the Modi government, despite which it had “managed to achieve higher growth”.

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“When the base year was changed, the government should’ve followed the healthy international practice and revised the numbers for the previous years. Now, when the data has come, it proves the dictum that truth cannot be suppressed forever,” he said.

Chidambaram refuted the claims that the UPA had handed over the economy to the NDA government in a bad shape.

“UPA-1 and UPA-2 delivered the highest decadal growth (8.13 per cent at factor cost) since independence. It is also a matter of record that during this period, 140 million people were lifted out of poverty,” he said.

Chidambaram said at the time the UPA demitted office, economic growth was 6.39 per cent at market price (in 2013-14), and the Modi government inherited an economy that was on the upswing. He blamed the current “poor” economic condition on demonetisation, flawed implementation of the GST, and “tax terrorism”.

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“Extraordinary powers have been given to tax collectors and they are issuing thousands of notices every day. Does the IT department have the strength to deal with lakhs of notices?” he questioned. “Ask any businessman and he will tell you the kind of tax terrorism the country is going through.”

He also blamed the government for not putting the economy in “competent hands”.

“The management of the economy is not in competent hands today. There is no dearth of people in the country who can manage the economy. But this government doesn’t have them,” he said.

“Every world-renowned economist who had come to serve under this government has left. There must be some reason.”

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  1. Shocking that ex finance minister terming tax collection from defaulters tax terrorism. Every tax defaulter should be dealt with sternly
    May be chidambaram associates are being identified and notices issued legally. Can chidambaram tell any other method of tax enforcement other than issue of notice to defaulter

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