New Delhi: Charging the Congress-led government with “gross mismanagement of the economy”, the BJP Sunday said India has witnessed no progress in eight years of UPA’s rule so far.
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Yashwant Sinha, who served as finance minister from 1998 to 2002 in the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) regime, said the economic potential India had gained was being lost due to the policy paralysis of the central government.
“The last eight years under UPA (United Progressive Alliance) have seen complete mismanagement of the Indian economy. As a result, the Indian economy, which in 2004 had attained the potential of breaking out into a structurally higher growth trajectory, is now losing the opportunity of pulling millions of Indians out of poverty and misery,” he said.
“The last eight years have witnessed no progress to make the Indian economy more efficient, flexible and resilient to global developments. In every sector, there has been drift, policy paralysis and outright mismanagement,” Sinha said.
The BJP leader added that the situation would have been “far worse” if not for “the spectacular agricultural growth that some of the BJP-governed states have achieved”.
“Both Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat have achieved over 10 percent agriculture growth,” he noted.
“Despite the fact that the BJP-ruled states were performing well, instead of helping us, the central government is creating obstacles,” Sinha alleged.
He was speaking a day after BJP held a conclave of its chief ministers which focused on impact of economic downturn on states and the “discrimination” faced by NDA-ruled states.
Sinha also defended the BJP’s slogan of “India shining” for the 2004 Lok Sabha polls, which the party lost.
“Slogans may be misinterpreted, but our shining India did not mean only Delhi, Mumbai or Kolkata were shining, it meant the villages of India were shining,” he said.
The BJP has already launched its agenda for the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, and has been targeting the UPA government on issues of slow economic development, price rise and corruption.
Asked about government blaming BJP-ruled states for the loss caused to the exchequer due to allocation of coal blocks as revealed by a Comptroller and Auditor General report, Sinha said the minister who signed and approved the allocation was alone to be blamed.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was holding the coal ministry during the period when the alleged scam occurred, costing the exchequer nearly $37 billion as per the CAG.
Sinha also charged the government for misusing the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), after Congress leader Suresh Kalmadi was not named in a charge sheet in a case of corruption in the Commonwealth Games.
“We were disappointed that CBI has not included Kalmadi’s name in the charge sheet. This shows the CBI is being misused and there is political interference in it,” he added.