Communist Party of India (CPI) leader Gurudas Dasgupta on Friday said he was ‘ very sceptical’ about Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh’s statement on the present economic crisis, which will be made before the House today, and expressed that he did not think that the statement would have any immediate impact on the market.
“I am very sceptical because only two days back the Finance Minister made a statement. Therefore, I do not expect anything surprising from him. I do not think he will say anything which will immediately provoke any response in the market,” Dasgupta said.
Dasgupta also predicted that the Prime Minister would focus his statement on the ‘micro-management’, like Finance Minister P Chidambaram, instead of addressing the grassroot concerns of the people living through the economic meltdown.
”What the Finance Minister has said, he will harp on the same lines. The Finance Minister is very, very, clever. He was talking about the micro-management, about the CAD, about the fiscal consolidation—but the basic human problems that you are facing, regarding the price rise, regarding the job loss, regarding the retrenchment, regarding the instability in the market (was not talked about),” Dasgupta said.
“Spending more is the only solution, but they are not doing it. In fact, they are contracting; they are squeezing the expenditure,” he added. Meanwhile, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath on Friday raised hopes for Dr. Manmohan Singh’s Parliamentary address on the state of the country’s economy, and assured that the Prime Minister’s speech would boost the economic situation in the country.
“The Prime Minister knows the economy better than anyone else and I’m sure his speaking in Parliament and telling the people of this country will have a message which will give a boost to the economy,” Nath said. Facing an attack over the economic situation amid a sliding rupee, Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh told the Parliament on Thursday that he would make a statement on the state of the economy on Friday.
"It cannot be denied that the country is facing a difficult economic situation... I do not deny that there are some domestic factors. But there are also international factors arising out of the change in the US economic stance," Dr Singh said. "There are also problems created due to tensions that are on the horizon in Syria and they have inevitable consequences for oil prices. I will be happy to make a statement tomorrow (Friday)," he added.
Leader of Opposition Arun Jaitley raised the issue as soon as the Rajya Sabha met for the day, and demanded a statement by the Prime Minister outlining the steps that the Congress-led UPA II Government is contemplating to tackle the present economic situation
He then took a dig at Finance Minister P Chidambaram’s 10-point suggestions, saying it was just a "discourse in economic theory" when the country was actually moving towards stagflation. Chidambaram had earlier on Tuesday suggested a 10-point formula to revive the country's economic situation, and sought co-operation from all quarters despite ideological and political differences.
Chidambaram, who was replying to a discussion on the country's economic situation in the Lok Sabha, said the country needs more reforms, lesser restrictions and an open economy. The Finance Minister said the fiscal deficit would be contained at 4.8 percent of the GDP even after doling out subsidies for the implementation of the Food Security Bill. He said the government is doing everything to boost investment
Chidambaram also underlined the need to encourage manufacturing in sectors like power, steel, automobiles and textiles. "We must increase production of electronics and textiles. We are importing things which we should not have imported. India can be strong only if we have a strong manufacturing economy," he said.