Union Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman who came under opposition attack for reportedly saying she doesn’t eat onions said at the press briefing that the price of onions has started going down at several places.
“It is not completely less, but it is going down. We’ve had a Group of Ministers’ meeting which is reviewing on almost every 1-2 days’ gap basis and deciding on how to further take up the import related issues. Onions are a perishable commodity. Due to rain in some places, flooding in some other, the crop was less and hence the low output. Govt is taking steps to import and bring onions to the market as soon as possible,” she said.
Meanwhile , Nirmala Sitharaman has been included in the Forbes’ ranking of 100 most powerful women in the world, a list topped by German Chancellor Angela Merkel for the ninth consecutive year.
Other Indians in the list include HCL Corporation CEO and Executive Director Roshni Nadar Malhotra and Biocon Founder Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw.
The Forbes 2019 list of ‘The World’s 100 Most Powerful Women’ has been topped by Merkel, 65, followed by President of the European Central Bank Christine Lagarde in the second spot and Speaker of the US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi, ranked third. Also on the list is Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina (29).
“In 2019, women around the globe took action, claiming leadership positions in government, business, philanthropy and media. These trailblazers are not to be messed with,” Forbes said.
Sitharaman, 60, a newcomer on the Forbes most powerful women list, is ranked 34th. India’s first female finance minister, Sitharaman has also served as the country’s defence minister.
Sitharaman is the first female to hold the portfolio full time. Before this, former prime minister Indira Gandhi briefly took the additional charge of the ministry.
Chief Economic Advisor KV Subramanian who was at the briefing as well said the evidence of measures to boost investment was actually seen in the record FDI inflows with US dollar 35 billion in the first half of 2019-20 as against US dollar 32 billion during the last corresponding period.
“Evidence of measures to boost investment is actually seen in the record FDI inflows — US dollar 35 billion in the first half of 2019-20 as against US dollar 32 billion during the last corresponding period,” said Subramanian at a press conference.
“It is a good sign of foreigners seeing India as a very important destination,” said Subramanian, while giving details of measures taken so far to bolster consumption and investment.He said that the Central government has focused on clearing all past dues of PSUs, enabling retail credit by supporting NBFCs and HFCs and supporting MSMEs via bill discounting.
Stating that there is a change on emphasis on disinvestment to enhance the efficiency of the economy, he said: “All of these measures have used transparent due diligence.”