Report that showed higher GDP growth under UPA than Modi’s NDA removed from govt website

August 21, 2018 01:39 AM

New Delhi: A GDP growth report that embarrassed the Modi government after it projected higher growth during the UPA years has been removed from the website of the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation.

The back series GDP growth report was published on the ministry’s website on 25 July but became controversial after it was reported by the media at the end of last week.

It triggered a war of words between the ruling BJP and the opposition Congress after which the ministry issued a statement Sunday saying that this was not an official estimate.

The report, prepared by a government-backed panel under economist Sudipto Mundle, concluded that India grew at a record 10.8 per cent in 2010-11 when Dr. Manmohan Singh was prime minister. It compared growth rates between the old series, 2004-05, and the new series based on 2011-12 prices.

Government sources and independent economists said the report, which became public just ahead of the 2019 elections, could become a cause for concern for Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his party.

The report also suggested that the average growth rate was at over 8 per cent during the 10-year rule of UPA.

Congress cashes in

The Congress has been quick to cash in. Former finance minister P. Chidambaram tweeted, saying, “The back series calculation of GDP has proved that the best years of economic growth were the UPA years 2004-2014.”

The State Bank of India’s economic research department published a quick analysis of the data, saying that while India clocked the highest growth of 10.8 per cent in 2010-11, it could sustain the high growth due to high inflation.

“In fact, most of the information about GDP series was already in public domain (for example, we already had a 10.3 per cent growth in 2010-11 as per the old data, now revised to 10.8 per cent) and thus the buzz about the recent data is intriguing,” the SBI report reads.

(Published with thanks from The Print)
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