New Delhi [India]: Former Finance Minister and senior Congress leader P Chidambaram on Thursday said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been unusually silent on the state of the economy and had left his ministers to indulge in "bluff and bluster".
"The Prime Minister has been unusually silent on the economy. He has left it to his ministers to indulge in bluff and bluster. The net result, as The Economist put it, is that the government has turned out to be an 'incompetent manager' of the economy," Chidambaram, who was granted bail by the Supreme Court on Wednesday in the INX Media money laundering case, told media here.
"Even after seven months into the fiscal year, the BJP government believes that the problems faced by the economy are cyclical. The government is wrong. It is wrong because it is clueless. It is unable to look for the obvious clues because it is stubborn and mulish in defending its catastrophic mistakes like demonetisation, flawed GST, tax terrorism, regulatory overkill, protectionism, and centralized control of decision-making in the PMO," Chidambaram said.
Talking about the quarterly growth rates of GDP, he said, "The third and fourth quarters of 2019-20 are not likely to be any better. We will be lucky to end the year if growth touches 5 per cent. And please remember Dr Arvind Subramanian's caution that 5 per cent under this government, because of suspect methodology, is not really 5 per cent but less by about 1.5 per cent."