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Finance Ministry Has Failed to Address NPAs, Note Ban Fallout: Yashwant Sinha

In an exclusive interview to News18 India, the former Finance Minister and bureaucrat said that the first serious task of the government should have been to solve the NPAs issue, plaguing the banking sector and is holding back the economy.

News18.com

Updated:September 28, 2017, 1:41 PM IST
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Finance Ministry Has Failed to Address NPAs, Note Ban Fallout: Yashwant Sinha
File photo of senior BJP leader Yashwant Sinha. (PTI)
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New Delhi: Senior BJP leader Yashwant Sinha has said that the Finance Ministry has failed to address the problem of non-performing assets (NPAs) or to even carry out a detailed analysis of the fallout of demonetisation.

In an exclusive interview to News18 India, the former finance minister said that the first serious task of the government should have been to solve the NPAs issue, plaguing the banking sector and holding back the economy.

Sinha said 40 months have elapsed since the government took over, and the bad loans crisis looks nowhere near resolution.

He also said the government had failed to do a detailed analysis of the effects that demonetisation would have on the economy.

“They should have analysed the effect of the note ban on employment and the overall economy,” Sinha said.

He added that the effects of demonetisation hadn’t subsided when the economy bore the brunt of another shock in the form of the Goods and Services Tax (GST).

While Sinha said that the goal of a cashless economy was a good idea, the move to suddenly impose it via note ban was flawed. “Even developed countries use cash to the extent of 40% of the economy. India is a developing country where the agricultural sector, a cash-intensive sector, employs a lot of people. If you suddenly force cashlessness, it is going to create havoc,” he said.

Sinha said that these reasons had led to the economy losing momentum. He said that a falling economy does not create employment. “The economy is not something that can be fixed overnight. No one has a magic wand. It took us four years to get the economy back on track,” Sinha said.
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