Agartala (Tripura) [India], June 29 (ANI): Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Tripura has registered economic growth with a per capita income higher than the national average and registered significant growth in its Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP), claimed the state's Law and Education Minister, Ratan Lal Nath.
"When BJP- Indigenous Peoples Front of Tripura (IPFT) government came to power in March 2018 the GSDP of Tripura was Rs 43,715 crore but on the following year (2018-19) it went up to Rs 49,845 crore, again in the year 2019-20 it was Rs 55,984 crore and in 2020-21 it has gone up to Rs 59,750 crore. There has been a continuous rise in the GSDP every year" the minister said.
Nath, who acts as the spokesperson of the state government, added that along with the GSDP the state also recorded a continuous increase in the per capita income and which was Rs 1,00,444 during the Left Front rule in the FY 2017-18, again in 2018-19 it went up to Rs 1,12,849, during 2019-20 it was Rs 1,25,921 and in the last FY 2020-21 it rose to Rs 1,31,128.
In support of his claim, the minister said, "Despite the economy in most states being down due to COVID-19, the state of Tripura recorded an increase in both GSDP and per capita income. It is because 41.80 per cent of the contribution to the state's economy comes from the primary sector, agriculture and agri-allied, which have not been affected much."
However, opposition parties, namely the Communist Party of India (Marxist) (CPIM) and Congress, have rubbished the claim and said it is a "jugglery of statistics" and "far from ground reality".
While the former Deputy Speaker and CPI(M) farmer leader of Tripura, Pabitra Kar said, "Figures may resemble growth but practically, agriculture in Tripura is in very serious condition. The main reasons are poor irrigation system, and no sale of agricultural products and raw rubber, the two prime sources of income."
He added that due to the Covid-induced lockdown and the curfew, everything was closed and people did not have work. "Moreover, Mahatma Gandhi Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) and other government development activities were on halt and therefore, people have lost their income. Government's claim that there is growth and increase of personal income of the people of the state is totally false," he said.
Echoing the CPI (M) leader, Congress vice-president of the state, Tapas Dey alleged that the government claimed of a double engine growth and improving the position of the state but the ground reality is that it was the worst state in the Northeast, and maybe in the entire country.
Deb said that the government's claim of steady improvement GSDP and per capita income after the BJP-IPFT came to power is a "jugglery of statistics".
In support of his claim, the veteran Congress leader said, "The state government is giving self-contradictory statements because on one hand it is showing huge growth in the per capita income of the people of the state, and on the other hand it shows that out of the total of 8 lakh families in the state, 7 lakh families are being paid Rs 1000 per month because their income was been affected due to the pandemic."
He added that the government's claim of economic growth is far from the ground reality. (ANI)