ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Myth and Reality

On UPA vs NDA; Gujarat vs Rest of India

In a lucid article published in this journal (“Did Gujarat’s Growth Rate Accelerate under Modi?”, EPW, 12 April 2014), Maitreesh Ghatak and Sanchari Roy demonstrate that the performance of the Narendra Modi government in Gujarat has not been exceptional. In fact Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Bihar have done better in terms of growth and/or poverty alleviation.

In another article (“Growth in the Time of UPA: Myths and Reality”, EPW, 19 April 2014), Ghatak teamed up with Parikshit Ghosh and Ashok Kotwal to point out that the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) governments 1 and 2 put together outperformed the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) regime in terms of growth, investment and other parameters. Thus, the evidence does not justify the corporate or media hype about the economic performance of Modi or the criticism of the dismal performance of the UPA government as projected by some well-known Indian economists. In a way, though possibly unintended, the mood of these recent articles is in favour of the UPA government. These are of course responses to claims to the contrary by some eminent economists and mark a clear divide between groups of economists on the forthcoming elections. It will be correct to note that both the recent articles by Ghatak and his co-authors are excellent analyses.

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