Accusing the Centre of bringing to a halt the nations’s growth across sectors and crashing the country’s economy by implementing policies like demonetisation and Goods and Services Tax, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Friday claimed that millions of rupees were looted by the BJP in the name of these economic reforms. “There is certainly a bigger game behind the Note-Bandi (demonetisation). There were scams of millions of rupees in the name of demonetisation. We want thorough investigation into it. The GST is another such scam,” she said.
“The BJP has looted lakhs and crores of rupees in the name of such decisions,” Banerjee alleged from the stage of her party’s Martyr’s Day rally here. “Everyone starting from the jewellers, sweetmeat sellers, shopkeepers to the big industrialists are impacted by the GST. Business in several sectors has either ceased or has been severely downsized. The Indian economy has crashed,” she claimed.
To buttress her allegations, the Trinamool Congress supremo gave out comparative data of India’s GDP growth, bank credit rates and NPA and the job opportunities during the last two years to claim that the country was struggling to cope with the policies of the Centre in every sector. “The GDP growth in the country has dipped. In 2015-16, the nation’s GDP was 8 per cent but in 2016-17 it came down to 7.1 per cent,” she said.
Slamming the skyrocketing of non-performing assets (NPA) in several banks and the dip in bank credit rates, Banerjee insisted that the growth of NPA is another fraud to help the BJP allies. “The inflated non-performing assets is also a form of scam for benefiting the close allies of the BJP. It has swelled from 5.12 per cent during the fourth quarter of 2014-15 to 11.97 per cent in 2016-17. The amount of NPA has inflated to more than Rs 1.66 lakh crore,” she asserted.
“Meanwhile, the bank credit growth that used to be 10.3 per cent during 2015-16, has now gone down to 5.1 per cent which is less than half,” she continued. Referring to the investment sector, the Chief Minister said the Investment Industrial Production (IIP) has declined from 6.5 per cent in January 2016 to 3.1 per cent in January 2017 and the indicator of investment has dipped from 6.11 per cent during 2015-16 to a minimal 0.57 per cent in the last economic year.
Claiming that the central government’s demonetisation move has adversely impacted the job market, Banerjee said thousands of people have lost their jobs while opportunities in at least eight sectors have drastically reduced as the companies were forced to downsize following the ban on old currency notes. “The job opportunities in at least eight sectors have been drastically reduced. During 2011-13, the vacancies were 12.8 lakh. However, between 2014-16, it has become six lakh which is even less than half. There are no jobs in the country. The BJP has failed in its promise of creating job opportunities for the youths,” she added.
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