ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846
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Playing to a Plan

Playing to a Plan THE confusion and lack of direction of the Janata Dal(S) government have become even more pronounced after its decline to 'caretaker' status. Not many days back we had the spectacle of the commerce minister disowning publicly measures formulated by the finance ministry to stem the flow of imports, describing them as constituting an unwarranted "panic reaction". And in the last one week we have had finance minister Yashwant Sinha and his deputy, Digvijay Singh, presenting very different pictures of the state of play in regard to the government's negotiations for addicional balance of payments support from the IMF. Talking to newspersons in New Delhi last Sunday, Sinha said that while his government had wanted to avail of the second tranche of stand-by credit from the IMF, this could not be done because of the postponement of the 1991-92 budget and the subsequent resignation of the government. But now his objective was to "help provide sufficient liquidity till June when the new government will be sworn in and can formulate its own strategy to deal with the situation". The choice before the new government would be to either cut back imports or to seek further assistance from the IMF, out as far as he was concerned, "I am leaving enough room for the new government to make its choice''. However, this was not the impression conveyed by deputy finance minister Digvijay Singh speaking in Bombay on Thursday. Yashwant Sinha's deputy stated quite categorically that negotiations were going on with the IMF for the second tranche loan under the Fund's stand-by arrangement and he did not even rule out the possibility of the loan materialising before the completion of the elections to Lok Sabha.

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