Yashwant Sinha
Yashwant SinhaWikimedia Commons/IMF

Puncturing claims made by the Modi government on economic recovery, former Union Finance Minister and senior BJP leader Yashwant Sinha said the so-called revival of the economy has more to do with tweaked norms to calculate growth than anything else. 

"We have recovered from the slowdown, at least statistically, if not really, because we have changed the norms," he said at an industry meet on Tuesday.

He said the government should substantiate claims of a recovery by providing comparable figures.

"It cannot be that you prepare one year's figures and say that now you're doing 7.4 per cent or 8 per cent or 20 per cent," said Sinha.

Incidentally, his son Jayant Sinha is Minister of State for Finance in the Narendra Modi government.

Earlier this year, the government had introduced new norms to calculate gross domestic product (GDP) data to match global practices.

According to the new norms, India's GDP growth rate was 7.3 per cent in 2014-2015, up from 6.9 per cent recorded in 2013-14 and surpassed China's growth.

"What are the new norms (of computation)? Even the Chief Economic Advisor of the Government of India does not understand this. And we've put the same culprits (who initiated the change) to sit in judgement over this change," Sinha said.

Recently, the government appointed a three-member expert panel chaired by the National Statistical Commission (NSC) chairman Pronab Sen to check whether the manufacturing data used in the new GDP series had inconsistencies, Livemint reported.

"There are 'serious issues' in the economy which need to be addressed and the government can never say that it has tackled all the pressing concerns," Sinha added.

Sinha also criticised the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) for not announcing larger cuts in repo rates.

In a sarcastic remark, Sinha said that the Modi government had declared those who have crossed the age of 75 years as 'brain dead.'

"All those who are above the age of 75 were declared brain dead on May 26, 2014," he said, referring to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's cut-off to appoint ministers.