'30 million slipped below poverty line because of Modi'

Congress MP Shashi Tharoor. (PTI file photo)

Congress on Wednesday slammed the Modi government's handling of the economy claiming that 30 million Indians have slipped below the poverty line due to the flawed policies pursued under the BJP rule.

Initiating a discussion in the supplementary demands for grants in the Lok Sabha, Congress member Shashi Tharoor accused the government of being “unduly optimistic” while making revenue projections.

He noted that the government revenues till date stood at Rs 9.3 lakh crore which was about 45% of the targeted collection of Rs 20.8 lakh crore for the current fiscal.

Citing the slowdown in manufacturing, investments and exports, Tharoor said achieving the dream of becoming a five-trillion-dollar economy by 2022 appeared a tall task.

The discussion also witnessed a verbal duel between Tharoor and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman when the Congress leader tried to attribute remarks on fiscal slippage to her citing media reports.

Sitharaman was quick to rebut, prompting Tharoor to beat a retreat by attributing the misquote to his research team.

Referring to reports estimating nine million persons losing jobs between 2012 and 2018, Tharoor claimed 30 million people had slipped below the poverty line due to the policies of the BJP government.

During the debate, Shiv Sena, which recently broke ranks with the ruling BJP, hit out at the Modi government over growing unemployment, agrarian distress and difficulties faced by trades due to GST.

Shiv Sena leader Vinayak Raut claimed that the Mudra scheme to provide loans to marginal sections of the society has the maximum number of non performing assets.

National Conference member Hasnain Masoodi accused the Modi government of putting political leaders under house arrest in Jammu and Kashmir and highlighted the problems faced by students, entrepreneurs and professionals due to the shutdown of internet services in the valley.

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