Congress taunts Sitharaman's 'Ola, Uber' comment


New Delhi, Sep 11 (IANS): The Congress Party on Wednesday taunted Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman for attributing the slowdown in the automobile sector to the "mindset of millennials" saying it reflects the "inefficiency, immaturity, and inexperience" of the BJP in governance.

Addressing a press conference here at the party headquarters, Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi said, "Addressing a press conference in Chennai yesterday, the Finance Minister said that the automobile and components industry have been affected by BS6 and the mindsets of millennials who now prefer to have Ola and Uber rather than committing to buying an automobile."

Singhvi said, Sitharaman also said that a dip in gross domestic product (GDP) is part of growth. "It implies that the dip in GDP has become the new normal for the BJP," the Congress Rajya Sabha MP said.

Slamming Sitharaman, Singhvi said, "The gross overstatement made by the Finance Minister is a grave joke on the poor state of the economy. She must self-expunge her remarks and apologise from the nation."

Singhvi said that the app-based car booking system and the auto sector cannot be correlated. "App-based services like Ola and Uber prevail in metros and tier-II cities. Conversely, the sharp decline in the auto sector is spread across India including the rural regions as well," he said.

The Congress leader said that mobile app-based car booking system did not emerge at once. "They have been in the country for almost a decade now. Indeed, app-based car booking is not a new trend that is responsible for killing the new car market. The trend of the slowdown in the automobile industry did not come all of a sudden. Sales have fallen in 12 of the 13 months since July 2018," he said.

Hitting out at the Finance Minister, Singhvi said she should also remember the slowdown was not affecting auto companies alone, but its impact is felt across sectors, throughout the economy.

"Have Ola and Uber become this powerful that they can impact the economy at such a large scale?" he questioned.

Singhvi said that twitter hashtags '#BoycottMillenials' and '#SayItLikeNirmalaTai' are trending on Twitter, as citizens, especially Millennials are rebutting to the cruel joke made by the Finance Minister.

The Congress leader also demanded Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Sitharaman's apology from the people of the country over the issue.

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Comment on this article

  • SmR, Karkala

    Wed, Sep 11 2019

    Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman having been graduated in JNU were 'Chee Tv' invented the Thukde, Thukde gang is the most incompetent minister. In the first tenure as a 'Defence Minister' seen teaching Chinese soldiers 'Namaste' who encroached Indian territory in Arunchal Pradesh instead of strong diplomatic protest.

    Her comments came a day after the sector reported its steepest monthly decline in sales since 1997-98. Vehicle sales across categories, including passenger vehicles (PVs), two-wheelers and commercial vehicles (CVs), fell 23.55% year-on-year in August, according to the industry body Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM). PV sales were particularly hit, falling 31.57%.

    1. High GST rates on automobiles: The goods and services tax (GST) levied on cars is a whopping 28%.
    2. Unemployment: Joblessness, and eroding wages, have also been identified as one of the reasons why today’s youth don’t want to buy a car. The unemployment rate in India in April-June stood at 6.1%, the highest in 45 years.
    3.Rural slowdown: Cab aggregators like Ola and Uber are largely restricted to metro cities and, to some extent, the tier-II cities. Two-wheeler sales a key indicator of demand from rural India fell 22%
    Tractor sales, too, have been hit. Mahindra & Mahindra, in August, reported a 17% decline in sales from a year ago.
    4. Commercial vehicles: In August dropped 39% from a year ago. The grim situation has forced Ashok Leyland to observe non-working days in five of its units this month. In August, the company had reported a sharp drop of 47% in sales.
    5. Overall slump: There is a fall in consumption across sectors like fast-moving consumer goods. People are not buying even small-ticket items such as biscuits.

    These days PM Modi's BJP government priorities are 'Triple Talaq bill', 'NRC', Kashmir as long as government ride on Reserve bank 'Piggybank'. Blame Pakistan and chant 'Bharat Mata ki jai' is the only mantra to deflect the citizens.
    Jai Hind

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  • Raj, Mangalore

    Wed, Sep 11 2019

    wow what a statement by FM really intellectual. bharat ka naam raushan karegi . God of Gods only save us now😷

    DisAgree Agree [1] Reply Report Abuse

  • Deshbhakht, Mangalore

    Wed, Sep 11 2019

    Probably the FM wants OLA/Uber to close their shop so that the auto industry revived. This is like gorging out the right eye so that the left eye gets more functioning.

    DisAgree Agree [3] Reply Report Abuse

  • Rational thinker, Mangalore

    Wed, Sep 11 2019

    Absurd, stupid and silly. Such immature statements reflect badly on the finance minister and her basic understanding of the economy Itself is highly debatable.

    DisAgree Agree [3] Reply Report Abuse

  • ad, mangaluru

    Wed, Sep 11 2019

    Sitharaman just knows Ola and Uber but she does not know they need cars manufactured which is not happening in India. Poor lady, she cannot handle it anymore.

    DisAgree Agree [5] Reply Report Abuse


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