Ravi Shankar Prasad retracts statement on success of movies indicating 'no economic slowdown', says 'factually incorrect'

  • Day after Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said that three Bollywood movies generating business of Rs 120 crore on the 2 October holiday suggested a 'sound economy', he retracted the statement saying it was 'factually incorrect'

  • Taking to Twitter to clarify his statements, the BJP minister released a press statement that said: 'Entire video of my media interaction is available on my social media. Yet I regret to note that one part of my statement has been completely twisted out of context'

  • Indications of slowdown notwithstanding, Prasad on Saturday had dubbed 'wrong' the NSSO report which had reportedly pegged unemployment rate at a 45-year high in 2017

Day after Ravi Shankar Prasad suggested that three Bollywood movies generating business of Rs 120 crore on the 2 October holiday suggested a "sound economy", the Union Law Minister retracted the statement saying it was "factually incorrect" and was "taken out of context". "Being a sensitive person, I withdraw this comment," Prasad said.

In a series of tweets on Sunday, the BJP leader released a statement: "My comments made yesterday in Mumbai about 3 films making Rs 120 Cr in a single day - the highest ever, was a factually correct statement. I had stated this as I was in Mumbai- the film capital of India. We are very proud of our film industry which provides employment to lakhs of people and contributes significantly by way of taxes. I had also explained in detail about various measures the Govt has taken as a pro-people move to strengthen our economy. Government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi always cares for the sensitivity of common people. Entire video of my media interaction is available on my social media. Yet I regret to note that one part of my statement has been completely twisted out of context. Being a sensitive person I withdraw this comment."

Dismissing reports of an economic slowdown, Prasad on Saturday said that three movies earning Rs 120 crore in a single day suggested that the economy was "sound". Commenting on International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva's remarks on the economic slowdown being more pronounced this year in India and Brazil, Prasad had said IMF's measurement was incomplete. "We never said that we will give government jobs to everyone, " he said while accusing unnamed persons of "organising against the government and misleading people over unemployment".

 Ravi Shankar Prasad retracts statement on success of movies indicating no economic slowdown, says factually incorrect

Prasad, who was Mumbai to campaign for the BJP for the upcoming Maharashtra Assembly elections, said, "I was also told that on 2 October, which is observed as one of the national holidays, three Hindi movies garnered Rs 120 crore business on that day. Unless the economy is sound in the country, how can only three movies collect so much business in a single day?"

He also termed wrong the National Sample Survey Organisation's report which claimed that unemployment was at a 45-year-high. "I have given you ten parameters where the economy is performing well, but not a single one is reflected in the (NSSO) report. Hence I call it a wrong report," he said.

Soon after, the law minister received backlash from the Opposition, with the Congress terming his comments as insensitive. Taking to Twitter, Congress spokesperson Supriya Shrinate asked Ravi Shankar Prasad if people should go watch movies when their future is at stake.

With inputs from agencies

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Updated Date: Oct 14, 2019 11:51:51 IST