New Delhi, July 8: Eminent economist Amartya Sen said that despite being the fastest-growing economy the country has taken a “quantum jump in the wrong direction” since 2014.
He also said that due to moving backwards, the country is now second worst in the region.
“Things have gone pretty badly wrong… It has taken a quantum jump in the wrong direction since 2014. We are getting backwards in the fastest-growing economy,” Sen said.
Twenty years ago, he added, of the six countries in this region — India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal and Bhutan, India was the second best after Sri Lanka.
“Now, it is the second worst. Pakistan has managed to shield us from being the worst.”
The Nobel laureate was speaking here at the launch of ‘Bharat Aur Uske Virodhabhas’, the Hindi edition of his book ‘An Uncertain Glory: India and its Contradiction’ that he co-authored with development economist Jean Dreze.
The economist said that the government has also deflected from issues of inequalities, the caste system and the schedules tribes have been kept out.
There were a whole group of people, those who clean lavatories or sewage with their hands, he said, whose demands and needs has been neglected.
While highlighting the recent report of a Dalit youth who was whipped for asking a salary hike from the manager of a petrol pump in Madhya Pradesh, he said they (dalit) are going around without any kind of certainty about their next meal, healthcare or education.
Taking a dig at the BJP-led government, he added that during freedom struggle it was difficult to see that a political battle could be won by playing up the Hindu identity, but that has changed now.
“But, that has happened. Which is why, at this time, the whole issue of Opposition unity is so important,” the 84-year-old economist said.
“It is not a battle of one entity against the other (or) Mr Modi against Mr Rahul Gandhi, it is an issue of what India is,” Sen added.
Also speaking at the event, development economist and activist Jean Dreze termed the soon-to-be launched Ayushmann Bharat health scheme a “hoax” as it was actually not big as it was being claimed to be.
“The budget (for the scheme) for this year is 2,000 crore. Even if it is spent, it’s less than 20 rupees per person,” he said.
It is projected as health insurance for 50 crore people, but it is virtually nothing, said Dreze, who helped draft the first version of the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGA).
Reasons by GoI to suspend cross-LoC trade highly indefensible: Soz
Srinagar, April 23: Alleging that Prime Minister Narendra Modi wanted to promote propaganda for 2019 Lok Sabha elections by trying to bring Pakistan, Kashmir and whatever suits his imagination, senior Congress leader and former union minister Prof Saifuddin Soz on Tuesday said reasons being given for stopping Cross-Line of Control (LoC) trade were highly untenable and indefensible.
“PM Modi wants to promote propaganda for Election 2019 and tries to bring in Pakistan, Kashmir and whatever suits his imagination”, Soz said in a statement here.
He alleged that since everything is happening at the behest of Prime Ministers Office (PMO), stopping the LOC trade between Srinagar and Muzaffarabad all of a sudden, is seen by the trading communities on both sides, as part of a “trickery” aimed at the Election-2019.
Two electrocuted to death in Poonch
Srinagar, April 23: A police constable and a civilian died due to short circuit of 33KV transformer at Chungan Chroon area of Mendhar in Poonch district on Tuesday early morning.
Reports said that a constable (Follower) in JK police identified as Faiz son of Mohd Sharif age 40 year and a civilian Mohd Shabir son of Ab Rahim age 38 year died on the spot after they came in touch with a live wire.
SDPO Mendhar Neeraj Padyar also confirmed to a news agency that two people including a cop and civilian was dead when they came in touch with live wire after there was a short circuit in a Transfer. Meanwhile, SHO Mendhar also rushed to the spot to assess the situation.
World Book day celebrated at Sgr, Kup
Srinagar, April 23: To commemorate the World Book Day, Department of Libraries and Research organized a day-long book exhibition at S.P.S. Library Srinagar.
The day is observed annually across the world to promote book reading culture.
Deputy Director Libraries and Research Shaheena Khan inaugurated the exhibition where collection of books including Quranic manuscripts, paintings, references and some rare books were put on display.
Meanwhile, similar function to showcase rare books was held at District Library Kupwara. People from all walks of life turned up at the book exhibition.
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