Madhya Pradesh Minister Blames Ex-PM Nehru's Speech For Inflation, Economic Woes

On 31st July 2021, a Bharatiya Janta Party minister in Madhya Pradesh, blamed the first Indian prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, indirectly for the inflation. When the Minister for Medical Education Vishvas Sarang, was asked by a reporter in Bhopal about a protest planned by the Congress over inflation, he told that the economic foundation is not been built in few days, and the country's economy has deteriorated as a result of the errors in Jawaharlal Nehru's speech from the ramparts of the Red Fort on August 15, 1947. He also said that if the first prime minister of India and his party made better decisions, inflation would not have been a problem today. He blamed Nehru and his family for the increase in inflation and the crippling state of the economy after the independence.

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Even Prime Minister Narendra Modi has mentioned Nehru a few times in different places. In 2018, he stated in Parliament that, India did not get democracy because of Pandit Nehru, as the Congress would make them believe. In 2020 while speaking in Lok Sabha, Modi once again mentioned Nehru by saying that at Nehru’s time, someone was needed at the Prime Minister post to make the partition. He said so to provoke the situation that the BJP government's decision to bring the CAA was necessary. On the other hand, Sarang claimed that the Narendra Modi government has improved the economy of the country in past years. he claimed that inflation has decreased, and people's income has increased during the BJP government rule. According to Financial Times, in May 2021, wholesale inflation hit a record of almost 13%, before dipping to 12% during June, making the economy more crippled. This affected the poor and middle-class families in India, who already were taking the burden because of the pandemic.

While speaking to PTI, Sarang also claimed that Nehru neglected the importance of agriculture in our economy. He said that 70 % of the economy was dependent on the agriculture sector, but according to him, Nehru didn’t care about it. He also mentioned that the village economy was good, but Nehru ended the village economy by using western methods. According to Sarang, industrialization should have been based on the agriculture sector. Sarang also claimed that internal security issues, the Kashmir issue, and cross-border disputes began during Nehru's tenure.

On the other hand, Congress leaders criticized Sarang for his comment. Congress spokesperson K.K. Mishra criticized him by saying that Vishwas Sarang was not even born when Nehru gave the speech and even asked him sarcastically that if Nehru is also responsible for all the deaths due to lack of oxygen, beds, and Remdesivir during the pandemic. Another Congress spokesperson, Narendra Saluja said that there were weird people in the BJP ministry in MP. He asked about the promise that the BJP made during its poll campaign about relief from inflation. The controversy is still unsolved, and it might affect the political situation in the country.