One is not sure he was not joking when Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad argued against the much-talked-about economic slowdown today by citing revenues generated by films. Prasad said three films were doing business in crores, “where is the recession in the country?” He said that on 2 October, three films earned Rs 120 crore.
Talking to reporters on Saturday in Mumbai, the country’s financial capital, the Union minister said that mobile phones, metro rail network and roads were being built in the country, due to which people were getting employment. He said that the infrastructure of the Indian economy was strong and inflation rates were under control. He also claimed that FDI is at the highest level.
Prasad said that the growth rate of GDP was intact. There are 268 factories of mobile handset manufacturing in the country, he said. Metro construction is in full swing, he added. Roads are being built, he said, adding that all these activities were generating jobs for the people.
Prasad rejected the employment data released by the NSSO. He said that there was no recession in the country.
In support of his claim, the Union Minister stated the figures of EPF. When asked about the suicide of farmers, he said that the government was identifying the reasons and would soon apply a soothing balm on the peasants. He refused to speak anything on Shiv Sena’s manifesto.
Prior to Prasad, Deputy Chairman of NITI Aayog Rajiv Kumar had denied the economy had been hit by a slowdown. Kumar had argued that companies that were old and making a lot of profit should be able to take measures to stop the decline in sales.
The International Monetary Fund has, in the meantime, accepted that India is hit by a slowdown and said that India would feel the maximum impact of the global recession. According to the recently released data of August, the rate of industrial production in India has fallen by 1.1%.
Earlier in the day in the United States, Former Governor of Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Raghuram Rajan had expressed deep concern about the country’s fiscal deficit. He warned that the rising fiscal deficit is pushing Asia’s third-largest economy to a very “worrisome” state. Eminent economist Rajan made this remark during the OP Jindal lecture at Brown University.