Rahul Gandhi, while addressing a gathering of students at Chennai, raked the North-South divide and claimed that the current government has a ‘North India-specific focus’. He then went on to claim that P. Chidambaram is from South India and determined the economy of the country for a decade.
— Congress (@INCIndia) March 13, 2019
The Congress President went on to say that it’s very important that Tamil Nadu is represented in senior positions in the Government of India. Perhaps he is not aware, the airstrikes at Balakot were conducted by the Indian Air Force when Nirmala Sitharaman, who hails from Tamil Nadu, was the Defense Minister of the country.
Given Chidambaram’s track record, Nirmala Sitharaman is perhaps much more adequately representative of the prowess of the people from Tamil Nadu than the former Union Finance Minister. It was under Chidambaram that the biggest scams of the country were perpetrated, it was under him that India was relegated to being a ‘fragile five’ economy, and it was under him that the NPA crisis proliferated within the country.
The revised GDP growth rate further showed that there wasn’t a single fiscal year during which India experienced a double-digit growth rate under the UPA, contrary to what was believed earlier. Towards the end of the UPA regime, the growth rate hovered around 5% due to terrible fiscal management. In 2012, India’s credit rating was lowered to negative by S&P. In 2013, they warned of a further downgrade to “junk” status and Morgan Stanley included India in the Fragile 5 economies.
The worst of it all was the UPA manufactured NPA crisis, which was a consequence of its reckless lending policy. Between 2004-13, the gross NPA nearly trebled. The debt of stressed firms rose from 1,372 crores to 6.689 crores in a matter of 6 years between 2008-14. Of course, it took the Narendra Modi government to implement the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code which led to the recovery of Rs. 3 lakh crores of stressed assets in merely two years.
While his performance as the Union Finance Minister was dismal, Chidambaram’s personal conduct does not appear appropriate by any means either. Both Chidambaram and his son, Karti Chidambaram, are accused in the INX Media scam and a charge sheet will likely be filed against him in the matter by the Enforcement Directorate soon as per reports.
Moreover, the CBI and other agencies are also probing another case involving Chidambaram and his son, the Aircel-Maxis scam. The CBI is probing alleged irregularities in grant of FIPB approval in Aircel-Maxis deal, while the ED is probing alleged money-laundering related to the deal.
Under such circumstances, it appears rather absurd that Congress President Rahul Gandhi ignores Nirmala Sitharaman while saying that people from Tamil Nadu should occupy positions of power in the Central Government. It’s even more bizarre that he then cites Chidambaram’s tenure as Union Finance Minister when he was incompetent at best and is under investigation by law enforcement agencies.