Prime Minister Narendra Modi mocked economists and said on Wednesday “hard work is more powerful than Harvard” as the latest GDP data shows demonetisation did not affect growth rate and the figures have improved.
“On the one hand are those (critics of note ban) who talk of what people at Harvard say and on the other hand is a poor man’s son who through his hard work is trying to improve the economy,” he said at an election meeting in Maharajganj.
“In fact, hard work is much more powerful than Harvard” he said without elaborating.
His remark comes after Harvard University professor and Nobel laureate for economic sciences Amartya Sen termed demonetisation as a “despotic action that has struck at the root of economy based on trust”.
The government had on Tuesday pegged GDP growth at a higher-than-expected 7.1% for 2016-17 despite currency recall, which was higher than China’s 6.8% for Oct-Dec period of 2016, making India retain the tag of the world’s fastest growing economy.
Speaking about Uttar Pradesh elections, Modi said the electorate has already ensured BJP’s victory in the first five phases and now they would give surplus votes as “gift and bonus” in the remaining two rounds.
“I request the voters of the state to give the rest of the two phases as bonus to the party. This is similar to the chillies and coriander leaves, which the vegetable seller gives to the buyer as bonus,” he said drawing applause from the crowd.
The Prime Minister had spoken of the possibility of a hung assembly in the state, saying that SP and BSP were waiting for such an opportunity for bargaining. Modi’s remark prompted chief minister Akhilesh Yadav to retort, sayign that the Prime Minister has shifted his stance from dreaming of 300 plus seats, and now talking about fractured verdict.