India's GDP growth slips further to 4.5%, Congress dubs it 'virtual free-fall'

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New Delhi: Adding to the woes of the struggling economy, India's economic growth slipped further to hit an over six-year low of 4.5 per cent in July-September, according to official data released on Friday.

The previous low was recorded at 4.3 per cent in the January-March period of 2012-13. The Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth was registered at 7 per cent in the corresponding quarter of 2018-19.

The slowdown in manufacturing activity likely pulled India's GDP growth rate in second quarter, marking the fifth successive quarter of decline.

During the six-month period (April-September 2019), the Indian economy grew 4.8 per cent as against 7.5 per cent in the same period a year ago.

The Reserve Bank had lowered the GDP growth projection for 2019-20 to 6.1 per cent from earlier forecast of 6.9 per cent.

China's economic growth was 6 per cent in July-September 2019, which was the weakest expansion in over 27 years.

Fiscal deficit exceeds full year target

India's budgetary fiscal deficit for the April-October period came in at 102.4 per cent, or Rs 7.20 lakh crore, of the budget estimates (BE), official data showed.

The government has targeted the fiscal deficit to be at Rs 7.03 lakh crore for 2019-20.

According to the Controller General of Accounts (CGA) data, the fiscal deficit during the corresponding months of the previous fiscal was 103.9 per cent of that year's target.

The Central government's total expenditure stood at Rs 16.54 lakh crore (59.4 per cent of BE) while total receipts were Rs 9.34 lakh crore (44.9 per cent of BE).

Besides, the total expenditure for the period under review comprised Rs 14.53 lakh crore on the revenue account, while Rs 2.01 lakh crore was on capital expenditure.

Total receipts comprised Rs 6.83 lakh crore of net tax revenue and Rs 2.24 lakh crore of non-tax revenue receipts.

Congress blames BJP's poor economic policies

The Congress on Friday took a swipe at the BJP government over the GDP growth falling to 4.5 per cent, and said this is the lowest GDP recorded in six years.

Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala alleged that for the BJP, the GDP was "Godse Divisive Politics". He was referring to the ongoing row surrounding a BJP MP's remarks on Mahatma Gandhi's assassin Nathuram Godse.

"India's GDP has collapsed to an abysmal 4.5%. We are in a virtual free-fallWe are in a virtual free-fall. This is the lowest GDP quarter in 6 years. But why is the BJP celebrating? Because their understanding of GDP (Godse Divisive Politics) suggests double digit growth levels. All in the perspective," he said on Twitter.

(With inputs from PTI and IANS.)