New Delhi [India], May 18 (ANI): Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram on Monday expressed disappointment over the COVID-19 economic package and requested the Centre to announce a revised and comprehensive fiscal stimulus package of not less than Rs 10 lakh crore.
"We express our thorough disappointment and request the government to reconsider the stimulus package and announce a revised and comprehensive fiscal stimulus package of not less than Rs 10 lakh crore of real Additional Expenditure equivalents to 10 per cent of GDP," he said.
Chidambaram, a former Finance Minister, stated that there can be no fiscal stimulus to the economy without Additional Expenditure over and above the Budgeted Expenditure.
"We note that Finance Minister acknowledged that additional expenditure must be financed by additional borrowing. The true value of the fiscal stimulus package will, therefore, be known when we know what is the additional borrowing in 2020-21 to finance the additional expenditure over and above the expenditure budget of Rs 30,42,230 crore. The truth cannot be hidden for long," Chidambaram said.
"A fiscal stimulus of Rs 1,86,650 crore amounting to barely 0.91 per cent of GDP will be totally inadequate given the gravity of the economic crisis and the dire situation in which people find themselves. Most analysts, rating agencies and banks have placed the size of the fiscal stimulus at between 0.8 to 1.5 per cent," he added.
Chidambaram also said that the fiscal stimulus package has left several sections high and dry, including migrant workers, farmers, landless agricultural labour, daily wage non-agricultural labour, workers who have been laid off or retrenched. He also included workers in unorganised or unregistered businesses/units who have lost their jobs, self-employed who have no work. (ANI)