PM Modi and his government has been accused of interfering in work of agencies like CBI and RBI. Now, a fresh set of allegations are that government has been interfering with country’s statistics-gathering agencies. These allegations have been made by more than 100 economists and social scientists.
These allegations are made just before India is about to vote for the next government who will rule for next five years. A statement has been released on Thursday signed by 108 experts from India and abroad.
According to media reports, it said that “economic statistics are vital for policy making and it is imperative that agencies associated with their collection and dissemination are not subject to political interference and enjoy total credibility. Indian statistics and the institutions associated with them have come under a cloud for being influenced and indeed even controlled by political considerations.”
This is a big blow for Modi government. There were many decisions taken by them like Demonetisation and GST. There has already been differences between government and RBI over demonetisation. It was revealed that the government overlooked RBI’s disagreement to do demonetisation of Rs 500 and 1000.
Also, the present government has been criticised for not putting up data of employment in the country. However, it was revealed that unemployment was highest after demonetisation happened, i.e. in the year 2016-17.
The unemployment rate was 3.9 per cent during this year. This was comparatively higher than that recorded in 2015-16 (3.7 per cent) and 2013-14 (3.4 per cent). There was also a rise in people coming to the labour industry in search of jobs. There was increase in “supply” of labour force but the “demand” was limited.
This data has been released in the Labour Bureau’s 6th Annual Employment-Unemployment Survey. These results were never published but were reported by Business Standard. The Labour Bureau will no longer publish data on jobs.
Earlier, acting chairman had resigned from post of the body that reviewed the jobs data alleging interference by other state agencies.
Also, RBI chief had quit in December over the issues of government interfering with his work. The current statement released by experts from India and abroad seems to re-affirm the allegations that Modi government tends to interfere in the data as well as working of the agencies collecting it. This is quite a big allegation and it seems that government needs to clarify its stand on that.