Subramanian Swamy attacks CEA
New Delhi: After forcing RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan out, BJP MP Subramanian Swamy opened a new front, targeting Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramanian and demanded his sacking, ruffling feathers in the government and the party.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and BJP quickly stepped in to dismiss Swamy's statement in a bid to douse speculation whether his statement had the backing of anyone in the government or the party.
"Well, the government has full confidence in CEA Arvind Subramanian. His advice to government from time to time has been of great value," the Finance Minister told a media briefing where questions were asked on Swamy's statement.
BJP national secretary Shrikant Sharma said the party does not agree with Swamy's criticism of Subramanian and termed it as "completely his personal opinion".
Attacking Subaramanian, a former IMF economist who was appointed in October 2014 by the NDA government to the post of CEA in the Finance Ministry, Swamy referred to some of his views on Indian economy he had held during his tenure with the multilateral lending institution.
"Who said to US Cong on 13/3/13 the US should act against India to defend US Pharmaceuticals interests? Arvind Subramanian MoF !! Sack him!!!," he tweeted.
Swamy's attack comes in the wake of reports of Arvind Subramanian being among the probable successors of Rajan as the country's central bank chief.
"Guess who encouraged Congi to become rigid on GST clauses? Jaitley's economic adviser Arvind Subramanian of Washington DC," Swamy tweeted, saying he is "helping Jaitely to recognise the enemies in our camp".
In a series of tweets attacking the chief economic adviser, who is an NRI, he said, "Now PTs (Patriotic Tweeples) can understand why our core economic sectors could not perform last two years. Trojan horses galore in MoF/Fin Institutions."
"Was AS (Arvind Subramanian) deposing before US Cong Committee against India as a US citizen or Indian? Does any PT know?," he asked.
The Congress exploited Swamy's statement to say that his target was not the CEA but Jaitley and asked whether Prime Minister Narendra Modi is handing over Finance Ministry to Swamy.
Former Infosys co-founder T V Mohandas Pai said in the face of Swamy's attack, people are asking a question "who is running the country."
"I think it is very important that the Prime Minister and Finance Minister put their foot down where he gets off. If Swamy has got some evidence, got something, then they can talk to the people in the party and decide what they want. Whatever you want to do, do it quietly," he said. .