PM Modi said creating an atmosphere of gloom over one quarter of slow growth was not justified. “We will maintain financial stability and initiate all steps to step up investment and the growth rate,” the PM said.
He added that the government is willing to make changes and improve upon the GST architecture as and when required.
In his strongest defence of the economy, PM Narendra Modi took on his opponents on Wednesday, promising to reverse the falling economic growth curve by continuing the reforms programme, while committing to address all concerns related to the implementation of goods and services tax.
Modi said creating an atmosphere of gloom over one quarter of slow growth was not justified, a reference seemingly aimed at the opposition and in-house critics like former FM Yashwant Sinha.
“We will maintain financial stability and initiate all steps to step up investment and the growth rate. I want to assure you the steps initiated by the government will put the country in a league of development,” Modi said while addressing company secretaries.
Ready to tweak GST, says PM Modi
The government is alive to the problems of sectors that may need immediate assistance due to the current wave of structural reforms, whether it is MSME, exports or the non-formal economy,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Wednesday.
He added that the government is willing to make changes and improve upon the GST architecture as and when required in what was meant to address the concerns of MSMEs and exporters.
During an hour-long speech, preceded by a 29-slide presentation contrasting NDA’s economic performance with UPA’s, the PM first took a dig at those criticising the economic performance in the last few quarters, saying some people were overly pessimistic with one quarter’s slow growth and were spreading a sense of despair.
The PM said he intends to stay the course as “he cannot mortgage the country’s future, for his own present”. The statement came days after Yashwant Sinha’s attack on the handling of the economy by Arun Jaitley and what many saw as a sharp criticism of Modi himself. Sinha’s comments have been latched on to by Congress’s P Chidambaram, who has been critical of the government’s economic performance.
Responding to critics, Modi listed out a series of parameters — from car and commercial vehicle sales to demand for home loans and air travel — to argue that demand is buoyant and quoted experts to argue the economy’s fundamentals remained strong.
But before that he slammed his opponents saying that when the economy was growing at a healthy pace, they blamed the data to argue that they could not “feel” it and that the “ground reality” did not back the numbers.
“A handful of these people launched a campaign and blamed the methodology for estimating GDP. Then these people were talking on the basis of their feeling that’s why they could not see development. But when growth slowed during the last two quarters to 6.1% and 5.7%, the same economists found the data to be correct.”
Modi said that during the UPA regime, there were eight quarters spread over six years when the growth rate was 5.7% or lower and slammed the Congress-led coalition’s economic track record.