Interacting with students of St Teresa’s College, an autonomous women’s college, here, Gandhi blamed the government’s mismanagement for the collapse of the economy.
Gandhi, who is in the poll-bound southern state of Kerala for campaigning, said, “The problem is going to carry on for sometime because the mismanagement is quite profound and deep.”
He said putting more money into the people’s hands is the only way out of the crisis but the government is not listening instead it is saying: “Produce more stuff”.
“What we believe is the way to start the economy is by starting consumption. By giving people money, they start to consume things and buy things,” he said in response to a query on the rising prices of fuel despite a fall in the crude oil prices in the international market.
“…due to demonetisation, due to GST, the economy was severely damaged. It was already weak. After that, when the COVID-19 pandemic came in, the economy totally collapsed,” he said.
“The government now does not have money because the economy is not running. They are not able to generate taxes, they are not able to generate money. So, they are now forcibly taking money from your pocket–from petrol and diesel– to try and run the government,” Gandhi said.
He said an atmosphere of harmony is essential for the economy to work.”You need harmony, peace and quiet and you need a strategy. That’s where you are running into a problem,” he said.