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Saturday , March 8 , 2014
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Growth dips to half in a year

The growth rate of Bihar in the past one year has come down to half after the JD(U) snapped ties with the BJP last year, former deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi claimed on Friday.

Taking pot shots at chief minister Nitish Kumar’s development claims, Modi said the growth rate in the past year has fallen drastically.

Citing advance estimate figures from the Central Statistics Office (CSO), Modi said: “The growth rate of Bihar in 2012-13 was 15.05 per cent but in 2013-14 the growth rate (gross state domestic product) has come down to 8.82 per cent, which is around half the previous year’s figures.”

He stated that while in other states there is a consistency in the growth rate, in Bihar, where Nitish also holds the finance portfolio, there is a fall in the growth rate since June 2013.

The gross state domestic product (GSDP) in Madhya Pradesh in 2012-13 was 9.89 per cent, while in 2013-14 it jumped to 11.08 per cent. Similarly, the growth rate of other states such as Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Haryana, Jharkhand, and others witnessed a jump from the previous year.

Even traders and industrialists feel that there is fall in growth rate mainly because there was no growth in the manufacturing sector and construction business, which were the backbones of the state’s development.

“According to the economic survey data for the period 2000-05, the growth rate in the manufacturing sector was 5.8 per cent, while in the period 2006-09 the growth rate declined to 5.6 per cent, in 2009-12 it came down to 5.2 per cent,” industrialist Satyajit Kumar said.

Despite a decline in the manufacturing sector, the state’s growth rate showed an increase because of a boom in the construction business. But in the past one-and-half year the construction sector too witnessed a decline in growth because of the non-supportive nature of the state government, he said.

Echoing Singh, the state chairman of Builders’ Association of India, Sachin Chandra, said: “The real estate industry, which contributed a major part in the state’s growth, had been badly affected because of government policies.”

Chandra said in December 2012, the state government issued an order not allowing construction of buildings that are more than 11m in height.

Because of the order, urban local bodies (PMC) virtually stopped approving maps of buildings that are more than 11m in height. Though the order was issued in December 2012, the construction industry felt its impact by mid-2013.

According to economist and Patna University teacher N.K. Choudhary, the government has become politically and administratively weak. “As the government has become politically and administratively weak it has lost grip on its development process,” he said.

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