Weird! Yashwant Sinha takes on Sitharaman for Ola, Uber affecting auto sector statement
Indore, Sep 15: Former Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Yashwant Sinha questioned Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman's claim that rise of Ola and Uber affected the automobile sector, asking why the sales of trucks should also decline.
Those in power were making "weird" statements, the former finance minister said while talking to reporters here. "People in the government are making weird statements. These statements will not lead to the betterment of the economy. But they will definitely affect the government's image," he said.
On Sitharaman's statement about decline in the automobile sector, where she spoke about people using app-based cab services instead of buying car as one of the causes, Sinha said, "If companies like Ola and Uber caused a drop in passenger vehicle sales, then why is there a slowdown in sales of two-wheelers and trucks?"
"Bihar's finance minister (Sushil Modi) said there is a recession due to Sawan-Bhado (the rainy season). A Union minister (Piyush Goyal) is talking about Einstein's law of gravity," the former BJP leader said.
Sinha also raised a question about Sitharaman's announcement to organise a mega-shopping festival in India on the lines of Dubai Shopping Festival to boost exports. "The economies of the UAE (United Arab Emirates) and India are different. India's economy will progress only when farmers in areas like Mandsaur in Madhya Pradesh progress," he said.
"We should have grown at a rate of at least eight percent. But in the first quarter of the financial year, the GDP growth has come down to five percent," he said.
The missing three percent growth meant a loss of Rs 6 lakh crore in just one quarter, he claimed.
Asked about the government's plan to merge certain public sector banks, he said, "I am not opposed to the merger. But it will not reduce their non-performing assets automatically." The process may, in fact, harm the banks as their officials will get tied up in completing merger formalities instead of focusing on actual banking, Sinha said.