Dona Paula: Former union Finance Minister Yashwant Sinha today said that the figures about economic growth put up by the central government cannot be trusted.
He said that the Indian economy itself is a challenge for our democracy and there is a huge crisis of confidence. The former union minister was speaking on the topic “Indian Economy and Challenges before democracy” organised by Citizens for Democracy, a local group of intellectuals.
“We cannot trust the figures put out by the central government. This is a huge crisis of confidence,” he said.
Sinha said that sometimes in early 2015 when present government had taken over, they changed two things – formula for calculating GDP and base years.
“The base years are changed from time to time but both (GDP and Base years) this happened simultenously,” he added.
“The result was that in 2013-14 which was the last year of UPA, the growth rate was 4.7 per cent and according to the new formula the same growth rate in 2014-15 went up to 6.5 per cent,” the former union minister said.
Sinha said that for the fiscal 2014-15 and subsequently we do not have comparative figures of the growth according to the new and old formula. “At least for five years the government should have released both the figures so that people could understand the difference between earlier and present figures,” he commented.
Taking a dig at the claim of employment generation, Sinha said that the union government has been playing with the figures to show that there is huge generation of employment.
“Everyone was speaking about employment generation. So, the government decided to ask some sarakari economists to write long learned articles and in these articles they said that the real figure is the employees provident fund organization (EPFO) figures,” he said.
Sinha said that there is group of eminent economists who say that the EpFO figures are not the real figures.
He said that the employment generation figures collected by union government’s Labour Bureau were disappointing. “What the government doing now is that they have told labour bureau that don’t collect figures on employment generation,” Sinha claimed.
The former minister said that growth rate and employment are the two areas where we have not been told the truth and we don’t know what is the real situation.
Talking about the farmers, Sinha said that the agrarian distress in this country is “serious today.” “In all 110 farmers organizations have come together to launch ‘Village bandh’ and from June 1-10, the farmers are not going to send their produce to the cities,” he said.
“So you are not going to get your supply of fruits and vegetables of grains, vegetables, milk. And the farmers have decided not to visit the cities. So it would be complete divide between village and cities,” Sinha added.