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Sunday 26 January 2020

Embarrassed Prasad clarifies why he cited film business to prove economy was doing well

Prasad had given the example of three films making Rs 120 crore on 2 October while claiming that the concern for the economy was unfounded

Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad today withdrew his statement, in which he dismissed all talk of sluggishness in the economy, citing the success of Bollywood films. He had said that on 2 October, three films did business worth Rs 120 crore. That, according to him, indicated the strength of the economy! Tweeting on Sunday, he said that his statement was misinterpreted, so “I withdraw my statement”.

Prasad had alleged that some people were systematically misleading the people about the unemployment situation against the government.

Prasad shared a letter on Twitter, where he wrote, “My comments made yesterday in Mumbai about 3 films making ₹120 Cr in a single day- the highest ever, was a factually correct statement. I had stated this as was in Mumbai- the film capital of India. We are very proud of our film industry which provides employment to Lakhs of people and contributes significantly by way of taxes. I had also explained in detail about various measures the Govt has taken as a pro-people move to strengthen our economy. Govt of PM Narendra Modi always cares for the sensitivity of common people. Entire video my media interaction is available on my social media. Yet I regret to note that one part of my statement has been completely twisted out of context. Being a sensitive person I withdraw this comment.”

Prasad said further, “I had also explained in detail what steps the government has taken in the interest of the people to strengthen the economy of the country. PM Narendra Modi’s government always cares about the sensitivity of the common people. There is a full video of my conversation with my media on my social media account. Nevertheless, I am sorry to hear that a part of my statement was broken and made to make a different sense. Being a sensitive person, I take back my statement.”

On Saturday, the Union Minister for Information Technology and Law had termed the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO) report on unemployment as “inaccurate”. The said report had shown that the unemployment rate in 2017 was the highest in the last 45 years.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) had said a few days ago that the economic slowdown in India and Brazil seemed a bit clearer (more realistic) this year. This was interpreted largely by economists as saying that the previous figures were inflated.

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