Nirmala Sitharaman’s husband- political Economist Parakala Prabhakar said that while there is anxiety about the economic slowdown in the country, govt is still in denial mode.
New Delhi| The Narendra Modi government has been criticized by various economic experts for neglecting the economic slowdown the country is facing. Statistics from several sectors in recent months have painted a grim picture of the economy. However, the ministers in the Modi govt have always denied it. While Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has announced a number of measures but experts have said that they are not enough and the govt has to bring a package.
The latest in the list criticizing the government is Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s husband- Parakala Prabhakar. In a piece written for “The Hindu“, Prabhakar praised the economic model introduced in India by former FM of India Manmohan Singh and Former Prime Minister of India Dr PV Narasimha Rao. In a scathing remark, he also said that the Modi govt should follow the policies laid down by Manmohan Singh and Rao.
In an article titled, “A lodestar to steer the economy” Prabhakar said that while there is anxiety about the economic slowdown in the country, govt is still in denial mode. “While the government is still in denial mode, data flowing uninterruptedly into the public domain show that sector after sector is staring at a seriously challenging situation,” he wrote. Not mincing the words, he wrote, “The government, however, is yet to show signs that it has come to grips with what ails the economy. Much less evidence is available to believe that it has a strategic vision to address the challenges.
“Neti, Neti but not Niti- BJP couldn’t develop its own economic policies”
Prabhakar said that while BJP rejected Nehruvian socialism, it couldn’t develop its own “set of ideas about the country’s economy”. He said while BJP advocated “capitalist, free-market framework”, it never practised it.
“In economic policy, the party mainly adopted ‘Neti Neti (Not this, Not this’), without articulating what was its own ‘Niti (policy)’,” he wrote.
He further said that the issues that led to BJP coming to power at Centre and in various states had nothing to do with economics. He said even the first BJP government headed by Atal Bihari Vajpayee didn’t introduce major economic departure.
“The present leadership of the party is perhaps sharply aware of it. It took care not to offer the economic performance of its government as a claim for re-election. It instead chose, wisely, a muscular political, nationalist, security platform,” He wrote.
Rao-Singh policy brought a shift in India’s economy:
He further praised the economic shift brought by the PV Narasimha Rao and Dr Manmohan Singh in 1991. He said even the Congress came to terms with the shift from Nehruvian Socialism and made Dr Manmohan Singh Prime Minister in 2004. Parkala Prabhakar said while the BJP criticises Nehruvian Socialism, it can’t take its eyes off it.
Like Patel, Rao can be BJP’s Economic Icon:
Sitharaman’s husband further said that BJP’s attack of Nehruvian Socialism was based on political criticism rather than the economic one. Invoking Patel, he said, similarly, Rao can be BJP’s economic icon. He also advised the BJP government of adopting his policies fully.
“Otherwise, macroeconomic thought leadership will continue to be offered to the BJP by the shouting analysts on television and in WhatsApp forwards,” Prabhakar wrote concluding his article.