New Delhi: India’s Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman defended her handling of the economy in a Twitter post, following criticism by a corporate leader on the lack of fiscal measures to support growth.
“As Finance Minister — you might’ve observed — I’ve been working on and regularly speaking about measures we’ve been taking on matters of the economy,” Sitharaman said via Twitter, responding to Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, head of Indian drug-maker Biocon Ltd. Shaw wondered why the finance minister, and not the health minister, was addressing a press conference on ban of e-cigarettes in India.
In the first of a series of tweets, Sitharaman justified her presence at the event that had given rise to speculation about more steps to support growth.
Kiran ji, a few things. This press conference was dedicated to Cabinet decisions. I began by saying that I was there in my capacity as Chair of the GoM which has dealt with the matter. @drharshvardhan is out of country for an international meet. 1/3 https://t.co/oL1UXPqEvJ
— Nirmala Sitharaman (@nsitharaman) September 19, 2019
While Sitharaman tweets regularly about her ministry’s achievements and her personal life, including her love for making pickles, she’s rarely responded to social media criticism on her work as Finance Minister.
Sitharaman, who took over her as Finance Minister in May, is under pressure to bolster growth that’s slowed to a six-year low and check unemployment that’s risen to a 45-year high. The government’s measures to reverse the slowdown have so far come in “tranches” and are seen as inadequate.
Sitharaman is due to address a press conference later Thursday after a meeting with heads of state-run banks to review transmission of the central bank’s 110 basis points of interest rate cuts this year. – Bloomberg
Kiran Mazumdar Shaw is chairperson and managing director of Biocon. She is among the distinguished founder-investors of ThePrint. Please click here for details on investors.
Also read: These are the reasons behind Modi govt’s ban on e-cigarettes
Two great Economists of the 21st century are working double hard, but the economy is going to the gutter every day.
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