Left parties on Monday lambasted the UPA government for slashing spending on social and infrastructure sectors, not collecting over Rs five lakh crore in taxes and making a “political statement” aimed at the upcoming elections.
“Finance Minister Chidambaram has left the hard work of getting the economy back on rails to the next Finance Minister. Clearly, he is not going to come back (to government),” senior CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury told reporters in New Delhi.
Due to the policies of liberalisation pursued by the government, “economic slowdown and the crisis facing the Indian economy will be further compounded. This is not due to any policy paralysis.
“It is precisely due to the policy of appeasing international finance capital at the expense of undermining India’s domestic economic fundamentals and imposing greater burden on the people,” Mr. Yechury said.
Maintaining that this was happening at a time when global economy was “tottering and shrinking”, he said in such a situation, the only foreign capital that would come in would be speculative capital.
Hitting out at Mr. Chidambaram for not tabling a statement on tax foregone, “a practice started by (his predecessor) Pranab Mukherjee”, Mr. Yechury said in December 2012, the amount of tax not recovered stood at Rs 4.82 lakh crore. It went up to Rs 5.10 lakh crore in December 2013.
“It shows there is no dearth of resources in the country. Had this money, a legitimate source of government earnings, been collected, then so much of infrastructure could have been created, jobs generated, incomes would have grown and hence the demand. That would have, in turn, led to a spurt in manufacturing and economic activity,” the CPI(M) leader said.
CPI leaders D Raja and Gurudas Dasgupta also castigated the government for slashing subsidy on food and fertilisers. .
“The economy is in deep crisis and it is going to be challenging for any government that comes after the election.”