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Saturday, Sep 21, 2019

Nitish Kumar denies economic slowdown, says Bihar continues to grow

Nitish Kumar said the number of shops being opened across Bihar is on the rise and so are the sales which could not have happened of the economy was down.

india Updated: Sep 03, 2019 11:41 IST
Anil Kumar
Anil Kumar
Hindustan Times, Patna
Chief Minister Nitish Kumar  cited Bihar’s double-digit growth to refute reports of an economic slowdown.
Chief Minister Nitish Kumar cited Bihar’s double-digit growth to refute reports of an economic slowdown.(Parwaz Khan /HT PHOTO)

Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar on Monday said that businessmen should not worry over attempts to paint a gloomy picture of an economic slowdown in the country as the state continues to record double digit growth rate and an uptick in consumer demand.

“The purchasing power of the people has increased and the overall trading and business activities have improved on the back of decentralized model of growth pursued by the government,” Kumar said at the state level conference of traders’ body, Bihar Rajya Vyavasayi Sangh.

He also that the number of shops being opened across the state is on the rise and so are the sales.

“In such a situation, there is no for worry on the economic or the law and order front as the state government was committed to keep crime and criminals under a tight leash. It has been noticed that nearly 60% of the criminal incidents were related to land and property disputes. Some people are in the habit of taking the law in their hands. But they will not be spared,” he reiterated.

Kumar’s assurance about economic expansion came three days after the Central Statistics Office (CSO) released data that showed India’s gross domestic product (GDP) growth decelerated to the slowest pace in six years.

Deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi who also addressed the function had earlier tried to debunk the “gloom and doom” theory about economic slowdown.

“He (deputy CM) has explained the inherent strength on country’s economy based on data and facts. It’s time to brush doomsayers aside and contribute in the development of the state as a team,” Kumar said.

A tweet by Sushil Modi that there was nothing unusual in the drastic drop in sales of automobiles as people postpone their purchase decisions in the Hindu calendar months of ‘Sawan and Bhado’. The tweet triggered a political debate with Opposition leaders trying to project it as an admission of the slowdown.

However, in his address Modi went about making a point to point rebuttal on the purported slowdown in sales and closure of business by automobile dealers. “During the first four months of the current fiscal, goods worth Rs 34,000 crore have been brought from others states for sales. Not a single automobile showroom has been shut down. Rather the number of vehicles sold has been higher than the corresponding period last year,” he said.

Modi said that Hindustan Unilever registered a growth of 7%, Dabur and Nestle 11%, Big Bazaar 8% and the sales of air-conditioners and refrigerators have grown by 5% and 11% respectively during the first quarter, he said.

First Published: Sep 02, 2019 21:30 IST