Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Saturday cited the earnings of three blockbuster movies to dismiss the economic slowdown.
Addressing a press conference, Ravi Shankar Prasad said three movies collectively earned Rs 120 crore on October 2 and so, there's no economic slowdown at all.
When Ravi Shankar Prasad was asked for his comments on the economic slowdown, he dismissed it with a laugh, referred to the movies data and said that the economy is sound that's why the country earned Rs 120 crore from three movies.
"I was Information and Broadcasting Minister in former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee's government and I am fond of movies. Movies have been doing huge business. Three movies released on October 2 and film critic Komal Nahta told me that the national holiday (on Gandhi Jayanti, October 2) saw earning of Rs 120 crore by three movies. Rs 120 crore comes in a country which has a sound economy," Prasad said.
Prasad also claimed that the National Sample Survey Organisation’s report on unemployment data was false. The report had said that India’s unemployment figures had touched a 45-year high of 6.1% in 2017-’18.
“I say the report is false, with full responsibility,” Prasad said. “I gave you 10 numbers [on the economy]. None of these numbers are found in their report. Electronic manufacturing, IT sector, Mudra loan scheme...we had never said that everyone will get a government job. Some people had deliberately tried to mislead the public.”
Prasad’s comments led to a Twitter storm, with Tweeple calling him out for such ‘ill-educated statements.
Gaurav Pandhi, whose bio describes him as a political analysts, tweeted: “Acc to BJP Govt on 2nd October 3 movies did business of 120 crores and therefore there is no economic slowdown. Avg ticket cost of Rs 400 would mean 30 lakh people worldwide — which is 0.25% of India's population. This determines economic growth? THE GOVT HAS LOST ITS MIND!”
Senior journalist Samar Halarnkar, editor of Indiaspend.com, tweeted: “India should dispense with the GDP, industrial production, agricultural growth etc as a measure of economic success--as indeed Mohan Bhagwat suggested--and replace them with the far more accurate and Bharatiya indicator of Bollywood box office turnovers”
Journalist Prosenjit Datta, tweeted: “Is he suggesting his colleague heading the ministry of statistics and programme implementation is not doing a good job?”
Some other comments were even less charitable.