‘Govt Not Open to Debate’: JNU Prof Who Quit Statistics Panel
CP Chandrasekhar withdrew from the Standing Committee on Economic Statistics on Monday, a day after JNU violence.
Eminent economist and Jawaharlal Nehru University professor CP Chandrasekhar, who withdrew from the newly constituted 28-member Standing Committee on Economic Statistics, has said that "there are signs that the government does not brook disagreement and is not open to debate once it has embarked on a chosen trajectory."
In a piece in The Indian Express titled, 'Why I quit the panel' appearing on Wednesday, 8 January, Chandrasekhar spoke about the undermining of the statistical system in India, while also touching upon other issues like the NPR, NRC and the violence that rocked universities like Jamia Millia Islamia and JNU.
Submitting his resignation on Monday night, Chandrasekhar wrote in an email to the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MOSPI): "I regret to inform you that because of the situation in JNU, where I stay, I will be unable to attend tomorrow's meeting. Further, I feel that under the current conditions, this committee is unlikely to be able to restore the credibility of the statistical system, which has been undermined in the recent past."
Statistical System Riddled in Controversy
In the piece published on Wednesday, he termed disturbing the controversy over creation of a "back series" for National Accounts Statistics. He also referred to the row over the results of the periodic labour survey and the consumption survey, concluding that the developments around them point to "a significant erosion of the independence of the statistical system."
Chandrasekhar, in his piece, also referred to the purported link between National Population Register (NPR) and National Register of Citizens (NRC), saying that the data from the former could be used to identify "doubtful citizens" for drawing up the latter.
On JNU, Jamia and AMU
Citing the events at JNU, Jamia Millia and Aligarh Muslim University (AMU), he said that they "reflect an inability [by the government] to tolerate opinions which differ or dissent of any kind."
Earlier, while speaking to Business Standard about his resignation, Chandrasekhar had spoken about a lack of faith in the government.
(With inputs from The Indian Express and Business Standard)
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