Pinarayi Vijayan | Screengrab
Kochi: Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Saturday attacked the central government stating that the Centre's public debt is more than Kerala's.
The Kerala CM inaugurated the Investors Meet today.
He claimed that the public debt of the Central Government is greater than the public debt of the State of Kerala.
The Investors Meet is being organised by the Industries Department of Kerala which was attended by around 10,000 newly registered entrepreneurs from all over the state.
While claiming on public debt, Kerala CM further said, "Some people are trying to create an impression that Kerala is drowning in debt. The public debt of the Central government is greater than the public debt of the state. Kerala's debt was 29 per cent of the state's GDP in 2016 and rose to 37 per cent in 2021. But in 2016, the central debt was 47 per cent of the GDP. This was increased to 59 per cent in 2021."
He also alleged that propaganda is also going on that Kerala's revenue comes entirely from the Centre. He said, "This is to mislead the state. This meeting is going to silence such people. The state government has done various things to boost the industrial environment in the state."
"There is an allegation that our state is not a good state for industries. It is a baseless allegation. Some are propagating that there is no industry in Kerala. Some media also support this. This Investors meet is an answer to that allegation," he added.
Vijayan also criticised Kerala's Congress-led opposition for not attending the meeting today. Kerala Opposition Leader VD Satheesan and MLAs from the Ernakulam district were invited to the program, but he didn't come.
On that, CM stated, "Everyone should stand together for the development of the state. Such views can be seen in other states. Party and political differences should not affect the development of the country. It requires broad-mindedness and dedication toward the state."
For not attending the meet, Kerala Opposition Leader VD Satheesan issued a statement in which he said, "The government's claim that one lakh industrial enterprises have been started in the last year and more than two lakh jobs have been created is a green lie. The government is trying to mislead people by giving fake figures."
"According to the latest report of the Reserve Bank, Kerala is the state with the least number of industrial units in South India. Capital investment in industrial units was Rs 4.5 lakh crore in Tamil Nadu while it was Rs 76 lakh crore in Kerala. While Tamil Nadu created 26 lakh jobs in various industrial units, Kerala's employment declined to 3.34 lakh. Kerala is lagging behind in terms of small industrial units in South India. The Department of Industries is trying to make the enterprises that individuals start on their own by taking loans directly from banks to the account of the government," he added.
Satheesan further said, "The government is sitting with its hands tied doing nothing for the industrial development and economic progress of Kerala. The opposition abstained from the entrepreneurs' meeting held in Kochi in protest against the government's action of presenting baseless figures to sow dust in the eyes of the people." (ANI)