Congress leader Rahul Gandhi this morning, in a fresh barb at the government, said that “distractions through media won’t help the poor” as he tweeted about the Reserve Bank of India’s latest warning on economic contraction amid the novel coronavirus pandemic.
“RBI has now confirmed what I have been warning for months,” the 50-year-old ex-Congress chief tweeted this morning along with a news report.
He then made a few suggestions. “Government needs to: Spend more, not lend more. Give money to the poor, not tax cuts to industrialists. Restart economy by consumption.”
“Distractions through media won’t help the poor or make the economic disaster disappear,” he added.
On Tuesday, the RBI warned of economic contraction till September. “More protracted spread of the coronavirus pandemic, deviations of the monsoon from the predicted normal rains and global financial market volatility are key downside risks to growth,” the central bank said in its annual document.
The pandemic has affected over 200 countries, bringing economic activity to a standstill, the RBI said.
The central bank also said that the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic affected the supply of notes. “The supply of banknotes during 2019-20 was also lower by 23.3 per cent than in the previous year mainly due to the disruptions caused by the outbreak of COVID-19 and the ensuing lockdown,” the report said.
The central bank’s annual report comes days ahead of the release of official data on GDP for the quarter ended June 30.
Mr Gandhi, Congress MP from Kerala’ Wayanad, has been relentlessly attacking the government on social media over the handling of coronavirus pandemic, which has badly affected the national economy.
The ruling party, however, has dismissed the Congress leaders’ claims. Last week, BJP chief JP Naada lashed out at Rahul Gandhi, describing him as “the prince of incompetence”, calling him a “loser” and accusing him of “spreading fake news” over Mr Gandhi’s attack on PM CARES Fund, set up by the centre to help raise money with which to combat the Covid outbreak.
“The entire nation has full faith (in) the PM and his initiatives. This faith was yet again visible with the massive support for PM CARES. Being the loser you are, you can only crib and spread fake news while the entire nation has joined hands in the fight against COVID-19,” Mr Nadda tweeted.