An important interview of former Gujarat CM Suresh Mehta

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An important interview of former Gujarat CM Suresh Mehta

Post by Rashmun on Tue Oct 17, 2017 4:18 am

The Gujarat model is nothing but a jugglery of words. The hard realities of Gujarat suggest otherwise.
In 2004, the CAG (comptroller and auditor general) examined Gujarat’s finances. At that time, the debt the state faced was somewhere in between Rs 4,000 and Rs 6,000 crore. Thus, it warned Gujarat to have some financial discipline to prevent the state from becoming a permanently debt-trapped state.


But the government ignored the CAG’s observations. In 2017, Gujarat’s debts have increased to Rs 1,98,000 crore, according to the latest budget document presented by the state government. These are not my figures. These are the government’s own numbers, which it declared in the Statement under the Gujarat Fiscal Responsibility Act, 2005 in February 2017.
Similarly, in the same document, one can analyse where the Gujarat government’s priorities lie. The agricultural subsidies that benefit the farmers have consistently declined since 2006-07. From Rs 195 crore in 2006-07 and Rs 408 crore in 2007-08, it has come down to only Rs 80 crore (revised estimates) in 2016-17.


Now compare this to subsidies given to the energy and petrochemicals sector, which are run by the Adanis and Ambanis. From Rs 1,873 crore in 2006-07, the subsidies to the sector have dramatically gone up to Rs 4,471 crore (revised estimates) in 2016-17.
Similarly, (the outlay for) food and civil supplies, which are essential for poor people, has come down from Rs 130 crore to Rs 52 crore in the same period.


How this government runs – as far as economy is concerned – is for everyone to see.


https://thewire.in/188030/suresh-mehta-gujarat-model-interview/

Rashmun

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Re: An important interview of former Gujarat CM Suresh Mehta

Post by Rashmun on Tue Oct 17, 2017 4:19 am

Do you think he is directly or indirectly responsible for the anti-Muslim riots in 2002?


Directly or indirectly, I do not know. I can only tell you my observations.
On February 27, 2002, the day of the Godhra incident, I met Bhupendra Sinh Solanki, the BJP MP from Godhra. He told me that Modi has called him immediately. Modi had just won his seat by a very narrow margin and the BJP had lost two out three seats in the recent by-polls.


Solanki told me that Modi told him that he will not serve him tea that day and asked him to report to his constituency immediately. Solanki told me that Ashok Bhatt (another BJP leader) will reach Godhra soon.
It was a day when the assembly had to meet. As I saw Ashok Bhatt, I accompanied him to Modi’s office. On seeing me, he was furious and asked me to leave.


In a few hours, I started getting reports from BJP workers who told me about the Godhra incident.
As the chairman of the state’s dairy co-operative, I went there and instructed the collector, Jayanti Ravi, to ensure that milk is provided to all the survivors. Soon, I saw Ashok Bhatt come with a media crew and make a statement that it is a “communal” incident. The collector repeated the same statement.


All of a sudden, Modi came in a helicopter, visited the burnt compartment of the Sabarmati express and made a statement that this was a “pre-planned terrorist act”. He wanted to aggravate the situation. Or else how could he determine the nature of the accident within two minutes of his visit, without consulting anyone more competent than him.
The next day, he organised the shradhanjali (tribute) programme and the riots followed.

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