Upset with Rahul Gandhi’s speech where he slammed the government for their terrible monetary and economic policies, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley took to Facebook to post a rebuttal. The post, titled “How much does he know?” is a point by point rebuttal of Congress President Rahul Gandhi’s statements during his speech at a rally in Mandsaur yesterday. Sadly, though he is the Finance Minister, his defense was not entirely truthful or fact-based.
Rahul Gandhi claimed that the BJP has waived Rs. 1.5 lakh crore loans for 15 industrialists.
Mr. Jaitley said that no industrialists loans had been waived and those who owed money were declared insolvent and that the loans were given during the UPA government.
It is true that the Modi government has not waived any industrialists’ loans but it is also true that they have written off 2,72,558 crores of loans in public sector banks. The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) has only resolved 1.9% of cases, additionally, in 37 cases where the principal amount owed to banks was Rs. 4 trillion only Rs. 1.7 trillion is estimated for recovery.
Rahul Gandhi said that loans were not available to kisans, only to industrialists.
Jaitley said that it was during UPA and UPA II that most of the NPAs were given by the banking system.
A report showed that while loans given to farmers were at 13.91% of outstanding credit, industries and services accounted for 63.34%. This is in spite of RBI data showing that the agricultural sector performs better in the industrial sector in repayment of loans.
Gandhi said Prime Minister Modi has given Rs. 35,000 crores each to two diamond jewelers that have escaped out of the country.
Jaitley claimed that the banking frauds started in 2011 when UPA II was in power and detected during the NDA period.
Jaitley is right that the Nirav Modi scam began during UPA II time but it accelerated in 2017. Additionally, Nirav Modi was part of the India CEO meet in Davos organised by the Modi government a week before the scam broke. Neither scams were detected in time to prevent either Mehul Choksi or Nirav Modi from leaving the country.
Rahul Gandhi said, if Congress comes to power, mobile phones will be manufactured in India, not in China.
Jaitley said that when UPA went out of power there were two mobile phone manufacturers in India and in four years this has increased to 120 units with an investment of Rs. 1,32,000 crores.
In fact, most of these units that Jaitley thinks are manufacturing units are actually assembly units for components that are made in China. The investment of Rs. 1,32,000 crores is also false, the figure he refers to is the total value of mobile phones produced and not the investment.
Rahul Gandhi said no jobs are being created in India.
Jaitley said that India is the fastest growing economy in the world with double-digit growth in construction, manufacturing etc which are all job-creating sectors.
India’s GDP growth was greatly retarded by GST and demonetisation and increased is finally on the rise again. This rise is due to manufacturing and construction, however, yet job creation has not been quite what it needs to be or what was promised. Several think tanks have come up with different job creation figures due to changing metrics. What is true is that India is not creating enough jobs and the jobs that are being created are of poor quality leading to a large number underemployment.