New Delhi: Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh described the growth rate of 4.5 percent of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) as inadequate and worrisome.
While giving his farewell address at a national conference on the economy, Singh said that the state of the economy is very worrisome but I would also say that the condition of our society is more worrisome.
He said, “The GDP figures revealed on Friday are at the lowest level of 4.5 percent. This is clearly unacceptable. The country’s aspiration is a growth rate of 8-9 percent. It is worrying to reach 4.5% in the second quarter from 5.1 percent GDP in the first quarter. Making some changes in economic policies will not help in reviving the economy. ‘
It is to be noted that according to the data released by the NSO on Friday, the decline in the manufacturing sector and poor performance in the agriculture sector compared to last year, GDP growth in the second quarter of FY 2019-20 was 4.5 percent. It was seven percent in the same quarter of the last financial year.
As per the data, the GDP at the constant price (2011-12) during July-September of the current financial year 2019-20 stood at Rs.35.99 lakh crore as against Rs. 34.43 lakh crore in the same period last year. Thus, the economic growth rate in the second quarter was 4.5 percent.
A year ago in the same quarter of 2018-19, the economic growth rate was 7 percent. It was 5 percent in the first quarter of the current financial year.
In addition, according to the data released by the government, the production of eight basic sector industries in the country decreased by 5.8 percent in October, which indicates the deepening of the economic slowdown. Six of the eight major industries recorded a decline in October.
Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said that the country’s economic condition is affected by the social situation. He said, ‘Our society suffers from a toxic combination of deep mistrust, fear and feeling of despair. It is affecting economic activities and growth in the country. ‘
He said, ‘For our economy to grow at eight percent per annum, we have to change the present fear of society into an environment of confidence. The state of the economy is a reflection of the state of society. Our social fabric of trust and confidence has been destroyed.
He further said that mutual trust is the basis of our social transactions and this helps economic growth. He said, ‘Many industrialists told me that they live in fear of harassment by government officials. Bankers do not want to give new loans due to the fear of not having to pay compensation. Entrepreneurs are hesitating to start new projects for fear of failure. ‘
The former Prime Minister also said that policymakers sitting in government and other institutions are afraid to speak the truth or participate in intellectually honest policy discussions. There is deep fear and mistrust in various economic aspects.
Singh requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi to help the economy by removing doubts that have made deep inroads in the society.
He said, ‘I would urge Prime Minister Narendra Modi to remove the’ deepest apprehensions’ in the society and make the country again a harmonious and mutual trust society which can help to accelerate the economy.