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Put aside vendetta politics and focus on economy: Manmohan

Put aside vendetta politics and focus on economy: Manmohan

New Delhi: Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Sunday said the state of the economy was "deeply worrying" and urged the government to put aside "vendetta politics" and reach out to sane voices and thinking minds to steer the economy out of this "man-made crisis".

The Congress leader said "all-round mismanagement" by the Modi government was responsible for the slowdown.

"The state of the economy today is deeply worrying.The last quarter's GDP growth rate of 5 pc signals that we are in a prolonged slowdown. India has the potential to grow at a much faster rate, but all-round mismanagement by the Modi government has resulted in this slowdown," he said in a statement.

Targeting the government, Singh said the country's youth, farmers and farmworkers, entrepreneurs and the marginalised sections deserve better.

India cannot afford to continue wwdown this path, he said, adding, "I urge the government to put aside vendetta politics, and reach out to all sane voices and thinking minds, to steer our economy out of this man-made crisis."

Singh said it is particularly distressing that the manufacturing sector's growth is tottering at 0.6 pc.

"This makes it very clear that our economy has not yet recovered from man-made blunders of demonetisation and a hastily implemented GST," he said.

The former PM alleged that institutions are under attack and their autonomy is being whittled down.

On government taking Rs 1.76 lakh crore from the RBI reserves, Singh said the resilience of the RBI would be tested after this record transfer to the government.

Noting that domestic demand is depressed and consumption growth is at an 18-month low, and nominal GDP growth is at a 15 year low, he said, "There is a gaping hole in tax revenues. Tax buoyancy remains elusive as businessmen, small and big, are hounded, and tax terrorism continues unabated. Investor sentiments are in the doldrums. These are not the foundations for economic recovery".

Blaming the Modi government's policies for massive job-less growth, he said more than 3.5 lakh jobs had been lost in the automobile sector alone.

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