- Discussion on inflation in Lok Sabha today
- Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman responded to the discussion
- The possibility of the country going into recession rejected
Monsoon session: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday dismissed the possibility of the country going into recession, saying that despite the Covid epidemic, Russia-Ukraine war and supply chain problems, India is today the fastest growing economy in the world. At the same time, he said that efforts are being made to bring retail inflation down to below 7 percent. Responding to the discussion on inflation under Rule 193 in the Lok Sabha today, Sitharaman said that the entire country stood united in difficult times and that is why today we are in a stronger position than the rest of the world. He said the credit should be given to the people.
“There is no question of India going into recession”
The finance minister said that for the last two years, while agencies like the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) have been talking about the poor economic condition of the world, they are saying that India is the fastest growing economy in the world. Sitharaman said the country’s condition is better than many other countries due to several steps taken by the government and the Reserve Bank of India. Responding to a remark by Congress MP Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, he said that there is no question of India going into recession, while many economies of the world are on the verge of recession. Sitharaman said that according to reports, more than 4,000 banks in China are on the verge of bankruptcy, while non-performing assets (NPAs) of commercial banks in India have improved to a six-year low of 5.9 percent.
“There was no war, epidemic-like crisis during the UPA era”
Nirmala Sitharaman further said that India’s debt to gross domestic product (GDP) ratio is 56.21 in the financial year 2021-22, which is much lower than many countries. In his reply lasting more than an hour and a half, Sitharaman said that despite the global pandemic, Russia-Ukraine war, supply chain deadlock and continuous shutdown in China, India’s position is better than many countries in the world. He said there was no such crisis during the previous UPA government. The Finance Minister said that in 22 months of UPA’s tenure, inflation was more than nine percent and more than nine times it was more than 10, ie. double digit. He said the Congress and the opposition should remember those days.
Significant increase in GST collection
Sitharaman said that according to the data presented today, the collection of goods and services (GST) has increased by 28 percent to Rs 1.49 lakh crore in July, which is the second highest monthly figure ever. Earlier, in April 2022, the GST collection was Rs 1.67 lakh crore. The Finance Minister said that this is the fifth consecutive month where the GST collection is more than 1.4 lakh crores. He also said that the GST compensation dues of the states have been cleared till the month of May and only the arrears for the month of June are left and that will also be released.
“Ex-Governor of Reserve Bank has appreciated”
During this, Sitharaman also referred to the recent statement of former Reserve Bank Governor Raghuram Rajan. Rajan has said that the Reserve Bank has done a good job in increasing foreign reserves and its situation will not be like that of neighboring countries like Sri Lanka. He also said that according to Rajan, there is inflation all over the world, in such a situation, the Reserve Bank raises the policy rate, which will help bring down inflation. He said the former RBI governor also said that food inflation is coming down in the world and will be less in India as well.
Members of Congress walk out of the house
Referring to the reduction in the duty on import of crude palm oil, sunflower and soya oil, the Finance Minister said that the government is trying to provide cheap edible oil to the public and that the prices of edible oils have decreased in June compared to May. During this, Congressmen staged a walkout from the House, expressing displeasure over the finance minister’s response. The finance minister said the Congress, which has accused the government of not having a discussion on inflation, is not ready to listen to the answer.
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