Accusations flew fast between Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi and minister of state for planning Ashwini Kumar over country’s economic situation.
Triggered by Kumar, Modi went ballistic on Friday accusing Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for dip in economic growth saying the Central government has been hit by “policy paralysis”
His impromptu onslaught started after Kumar told reporters that Gujarat was lacking in some areas and there was different in data regarding out of school children in the state. Gujarat government claimed that less than one lakh children were out of school whereas the Planning Commission put the figure at 1.53 lakh.
The CM was at the plan panel to finalise the state’s annual plan pegged at Rs. 51,000 crore for current fiscal as compared to Rs. 38,000 crore for last financial year. The state will get Rs. 2,51,000 crore in the 12th plan (2012-17) as compared to Rs. 2,30,00 crore it got from the Central government since 1960.
Once the meeting got over, the verbal duel took place with panel’s deputy chairperson Montek Singh Ahluwalia a spectator.
Modi said PM Singh’s had told Rajya Sabha in March that economy will grow by 7% but the data shows it is much less. “Economic growth is falling, rupee is weakening and inflation is rising,” he said, terming it an indication of the Central government doing nothing to revive the economy. “The Central government made 20 policy announcements but no final decision has been taken”.
Terming that the economic growth was struck, Modi said the Central government was in total paralysis and it was a matter of “deep” concern.
Kumar tried to do some damage control by blaming global economic situation was India’s falling economic growth and went to the extent of claiming that growth in the 12th plan (2012-17) would be around eight percent. The approach paper approved by Prime Minister Singh had targeted growth at nine percent during 12th plan.
“Indian is integrated with global economic stream,” was his rebuttal to Modi, emphasising that even United States has also lowered its economic growth target.