Concerned over the rapid slide in the Indian economy, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday formed a 5-member Economic Advisory Council to analyse economic and other issues.
NITI Aayog member Bibek Debroy has been selected to head the EAC, while other members include include NITI Aayog’s Principal Advisor Ratan Watal and economists Surjit Bhalla, Rathin Roy and Ashima Goyal as part-time members.
An official statement said, “The five-member council consists of economists of high repute and eminence.”
As for the terms of reference, the statement said its role would be to “analyse any issue, economic or otherwise, referred to it by the prime minister and advising him thereon.”
It will also “address issues of macroeconomic importance” and present its views to the prime minister, it said, adding “This could be either suo-motu or on reference from the prime minister or anyone else.”
Its terms of reference also includes attending to “any other task as may be desired by the prime minister from time to time,” PTI quoted the statement.
The economic growth under the Modi government has slumped to three year low and the forecast looking even gloomier with analysts predicting economic depression in India.
Soon after the new GDP data showed that India’s GDP had slowed down to lowest in three years, BJP MP Subramanian Swamy said that he had warned the prime minister of economic downturn. But it seems, the PM has once again sidelined Swamy while constituting the EAC.
Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh too jumped in to predict more bad news for the economy. Curiously, it was he, who had first warned the Modi government of at least 2% slump in India’s GDP following the central government’s announcement on demonetisation.