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Don’t do something to artificially boost growth: Congress slams BJP on ‘data revamp’ reports

NEW DELHI: The Congress on Sunday expressed apprehension over the government’s reported bid to revamp official statistics to account for the unorganised sector, saying no attempt should be made to “artificially boost” the rate of growth.

The government has suddenly expressed alarm and a “revamp of official statistics” is being proposed because it believes unorganised sector has not been looked at, Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi said at a press conference.

“We have no problem if it is a constructive exercise. Please don’t do something where you cannot do inter-generational comparisons. Please, don’t do something, where you artificially boost your 4.9 per cent official rate of growth, which your own CEA (Arvind Subramanian) believes, may be 2 to 2.5 per cent less than what is projected and stated,” he said.

The government does not have a clue about how to control this “wild horse of a runaway economic distress”, Singhvi claimed.

“This government is desperate to find quick-fix solutions, jumla solutions, misleading solutions, to find sleight of hand solutions, to avoid substance, to avoid the real meat of the matter and give a misleading new issue to digress and divert attention,” he alleged.

The Congress leader also hit out at the government over the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) data that an average 35 unemployed and 36 self-employed people ended their lives every day in 2018, with the two categories together accounting for 26,085 suicide deaths during the year.

“That figure is 10,349 more than the deaths caused by farm distress, which is an altogether different, also a very sad, but a different category,” he said.

“What is the reality behind this? The reality is jumlas like ‘Make in India’ along with the clueless finance minister, prime minister, home minister. no idea what to do? An enemy a day, an issue a day, a potboiler a day, keeps all these issues away and will solve the economy is the approach of this government,” he alleged.

“We need less of issues which are non-productive and irrelevant, like the NRC, CAA. We need lesser issues of pure political rhetoric,” Singhvi said.