FM Blames "Millennial Mindset" For Auto Crisis, Desi Twitter Responds With Sarcasm!

What’s causing auto industry slowdown? Millennials, among other things: FM Sitharaman

"Government is conscious on the need to respond to the slowdown in the auto sector", she said.

"We have earmarked ₹100-lakh crore for infrastructure and I think we should speed up spending on various infrastructure projects and the task force has already begun to identify projects viable for investment", Sitharaman said.

On GDP growth, she said, "It's not that the government is not responding with measures to boost GDP". Facing its worst decline in sales since 1997-98, the automobile sector has been clamouring for measures to rejuvenate demand, including relaxation in GST rates.

With regard to the industry demand for a cut in the goods and services tax (GST) on automobiles, she said the GST Council would decide on the matter.

"I can not singularly take a decision on GST rate cut on automobiles".

In an effort to arrest the slowdown in the economy, Sitharaman met representatives of several industries in July to understand the challenges faced by them.

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) had also recently flagged disruptions in auto sector.

The GST Council is set to meet on September 20 in Goa.

At the media briefing in Chennai on Tuesday, Sitharaman also said the GST revenue collection needed attention. This was the second month in the current financial year that the collections fell short of Rs 1 trillion. "Transition to Bharat Stage VI emission norms and higher registration fee have also affected the sales", she added.

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has defended the dip in GDP growth to over six-year low of five per cent in April-June quarter terming it as "cyclical" and said that the fall has not impacted the people as the government has ensured the inflation remains below four per cent. Pointing out that it's part of the growth cycle, the FM said, "I am not going to harp on the earlier times when it has happened. Our full focus is now on how GDP can rise in the next quarter". It's based on a formula that has been arrived at by the relevant committees, she said.

According to her, the task force is in the process of identifying the infrastructure projects to be funded, as well as expedited, and the Central government will start funding infrastructure projects once it submits its report.

"The idea to merge the banks was so that all banks can benefit from each other", she said, adding that she is not aware of any unhappiness yet among the bank employees about the mergers. "The effective date of mergers will be decided by the respective board of directors", said Sitharaman.

On the removal of Article 370, to withdraw the special status of Jammu & Kashmir, the minister said it was a long-time dream of the BJP.

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