In a scathing attack on Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s Rs 73,000 crore stimulus package, Senior Congress leader and Former union minister P Chidambaram while reacting to the announcement has termed the Central government’s move an another “sly attempt” to dazzle people with exaggerated numbers.
Addressing a digital press conference, the Congress leader said that the earlier so-called ‘Rs 20 lakh crore package’ was a massive failure because it was a hoax.
“After carefully reading the statement of the Finance Minister on the so-called stimulus package, I am reminded of the Hindi proverb Khoda Pahaad Nikla Chuha. Loosely translated, it means ‘dig a mountain and find a mouse’,” Chidambaram said.
“Let me make it clear at the outset: the grand announcement yesterday was no stimulus package to push economic growth; it was another sly attempt to dazzle the people with exaggerated numbers and lead them to believe that the government is hands-on and responsive to the needs of the people and the economy,” he said.
Calling the Rs 73,000 crore package as a “hoax”, the former union minister said that the stimulus is not of the value of Rs 73,000 crore.
“Nor is it of the value of Rs 1,00,000 crore, another number that has been thrown at us. The fiscal impact of these announcements is estimated by analysts to be a mere 0.1 per cent of GDP. I am also amazed by the use of the phrase ‘demand infusion’. I wonder if such a phrase exists,” he said.
“The government is also trying to play the role of ma-baap when it tells government servants what amount and on what goods and when they should spend their own money. Just as the BJP has been telling people what to eat, what to wear, what language to speak, who to love, who to marry etc., it is now trying to control people’s spending preferences. This is another piece of retrograde interference in people’s lives,” he added.