oppn parties Where Is The Economy Headed?

News Snippets

  • In a first, the Supreme Court recognizes marital rape, although for the limited purpose of allowing married women the right of abortion up to 24 weeks if they conceived as a result of forced sex by their husbands
  • Air India cuts discounts on base fare to students and senior citizens from 50% to 25%
  • Mallikarjun Kharge and Digvijay Singh are being touted as frontrunners to take on Shashi Tharoor in the elections for the post of Congress president
  • Sonia Gandhi will decide who will be Rajasthan CM if she feels there is a need to change guard after the near-rebellion by MLAs in the state
  • Ashok Gehlot bowed out of the race for being Congress president after meeting Sonia Gandhi
  • India has moved to the 40th spot in the innovation index, up 6 spots from last year
  • DGGI has alleged that top insurance companies, banks and NBFCs has committed a fraud of Rs 800cr by claiming input tax credit without underlying supplies
  • The Centre will borrow Rs 10000cr less than planned earlier due to good revenue collections
  • At $23.9bn, India's current account deficit widened to 2.8% in Q1, the worst in four years
  • Stocks continue to flounder on Thursday: Sensex sheds 188 points to 56409 and Nifty 40 points to 16818
  • The 36th National Games were declared open on Thusrday by PM Modi in front of a record crowd in Motera near Ahmedabad
  • Jasprit Bumrah most likely to miss T20 World Cup due to recurrence of back injury
  • PFI's political wing, the SDPI is on EC radar and action will follow soon if discrepancies are detected
  • Ashok Gehlot to meet Sonia Gandhi today, says all issues will be sorted out soon
  • Referring to the PFI ban, most Muslim organizations ask the government to take similar action against right wings organizations like the RSS, Bajrang Dal, VHP and the like
In a landmark order, Supreme Court rules that all women, married or unmarried, are entitled to safe and legal abortion up to 24 weeks of pregnancy as per the MTP Act
oppn parties
Where Is The Economy Headed?

By Ashwini Agarwal
First publised on 2018-06-18 08:41:09

The economy is showing signs of revival and it is reflected in the industrial production figures that grew 4.9 percent in April after reaching a five-month low in March. This means that demand for goods and services is rising and that it out hope for creation of jobs, one thing that the present government has not managed to bring on track. But this good news is also tempered by extremely low or negative growth in sectors like agriculture, fishing and mining. While mining is suffering from the effects of large scale corruption in licensing and the resultant court cases, if agriculture – the sector that provides jobs to nearly half of the workforce – does not take off and if farm distress continues, jobs created in factories or the service sector will not be enough as a large number of people will be rendered unemployed from agriculture. The only ray of hope is that the Met has predicted a normal-to-good monsoon and it might help in reviving the sector and lessening farm distress.

On the other hand, hardening of oil and commodity prices have meant that the consumer price index (CPI) is rising faster than expected. As producers battle with rising input costs, they are unable to absorb it in the face of thin margins and product prices are increasing across the board. Couple this with rising prices of daily essentials and farm produce such as vegetables and fruits and the problem being faced by households is clear. In fact, most households surveyed by the RBI expect the CPI to rise faster in the coming months and reach its peak during the festival season in September-October.

The government has to work fast in introducing further reforms. It also has to step up investments in the renewable energy sector so that reliance on fossil fuels is decreased. If inflation rises beyond a comfortable level, the RBI will have to follow a tight money policy to suck out excess cash from the economy. Prices are not likely to fall soon because even if the monsoon is good and the farms produce more, the effects will show only during September-October. By that time, the festival season will push up demand to bring us back to square one.