NITI Aayog Vice Chairperson Rajiv Kumar said on Monday that the Bharatiya Janata Party-led government at the Centre can no longer use the rule of the United Progressive Alliance between 2004 and 2014 as an excuse for its failures, IANS reported.
“Now the economy has come out of those inheritance problems [of the legacy of UPA rule],” Kumar told IANS in an interview. “No more should they be used as an excuse for anything. Whatever happens now is of the government’s own doing.”
“After all, the government has done so much despite all the legacy problems,” Kumar added. “It took huge structural reforms like demonetisation, the Goods and Services Tax, the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, Benami Transactions Act, Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act and recapitalisation of banks to overcome those legacy issues. I think we have finally overcome those and henceforth, the government should be judged on its own merit.”
Kumar said the government had inherited “the most terrible economic situation” from the UPA. He said that when the BJP took power in 2014, inflation had crossed the 9% mark and the growth rate was below 6%.
“What [former Finance Minister] P Chidambaram had done was to allow the fiscal deficit to run from 2.8% at one time to as far as 6.4%,” Kumar claimed. “From there to come to a situation where we have now achieved a growth rate of 6.7% last year and 7.7% in the last quarter with inflation at 3.8%, I think that’s just remarkable.”