'White paper' will highlight country's poor economic condition before 2014: BJP's Jayant Sinha

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New Delhi, Feb 7 (PTI) BJP leader and Standing Committee on Finance chairman Jayant Sinha on Wednesday said the government's proposed 'white paper' will highlight the country's "poor economic condition" when the Congress-led UPA left power and how the incumbent dispensation brought the turnaround.

Participating in a debate on the interim Budget in the Lok Sabha, Sinha said India was among the 'fragile five' economies of the world during the previous UPA regime in 2013.

"India's GDP growth had slowed down to 5 per cent, inflation had risen to 10 per cent, NPAs of banks had risen to 10 per cent. The country was facing balance of payment crisis," the MP from Jharkhand's Hazaribagh claimed.

He said that the Modi government brought the turnaround when the BJP came to power defeating the Congress in 2014.

"In the white paper, we will clarify what was the position of economy (before 2014)...and how we have tackled the economic problems," Sinha elaborated.

The ongoing Budget session of Parliament is being extended by a day till Saturday, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi said here, with the government set to table the 'white paper' comparing the state of the Indian economy before and after 2014, when the BJP came to power defeating the Congress.

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will present the 'white paper' to highlight the country's poor economic condition when the Congress-led UPA left power, as often charged by the government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and how the incumbent dispensation brought the turnaround.

She will table it in both Houses -- Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha.

In her interim Budget speech, Sitharaman had said the central government would table the 'white paper'.

"The crisis of those years has been overcome, and the economy has been put firmly on a high sustainable growth path with all-round development," the finance minister had said in her speech on February 1.

"It is now appropriate to look at where we were then till 2014 and where we are now, only for the purpose of drawing lessons from the mismanagement of those years. The government will lay a 'white paper' on the table of the House," she had said.

Parliament usually does not function on weekends but there have been instances in the past when the Houses have met on Saturdays.

The 'white paper' will also present the ruling BJP a handle to attack the Congress as the country gears up for the upcoming Lok Sabha polls, expected in April-May.

Also participating in the debate on the Budget, Bhartruhari Mahtab (BJD) said the finance minister in her interim Budget has given priority for fiscal consolidation and this reveals confidence that the government has.

Mahtab said the time is ripe for introspection and action for inclusive growth of India which the country aspires to achieve.

Noting that less than 50 per cent of railway passengers have insurance coverage in India, he urged the government to consider providing insurance coverage to all railway pasengers. PTI BKS BKS KVK KVK