Chidambaram Points Out Gadkari & FM’s ‘Contradicting’ MSME Claims

‘Will both ministers ‘settle their accounts’ first and let MSMEs save themselves without govt’s ‘help’?’ he tweeted.

1 min read
File image of Congress leader P Chidambaram.

Congress leader and former Finance Minister P Chidambaram took a jibe at the central government on 15 May when he highlighted contradictory statements made by two Union minister’s on the condition of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) that have been adversely affected in the lockdown to curtail the spread of COVID-19.

In the first tweet, Chidambaram pointed out a comment by MSME Minister Nitin Gadkari who told news channel CNBC-TV18 in an interview that government agencies owed MSMEs Rs 5 lakh crore in unpaid dues. Then he pointed towards a statement made by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman where she announced Rs 3 lakh crore in collateral-free loans for 45 lakh MSMEs.

He then went on to say, “Will the two ministers ‘settle their accounts’ first and let MSMEs save themselves without government’s ‘help’?”

Earlier this week Sitharaman in a press conference said loans to MSMEs would be credit-free and come with a 12-month moratorium. Last week Gadkari had said that dues that were owed to MSMEs by the state and central governments, as well as by PSUs, and other industries were very high. He added how it was due to these dues that the MSMEs were in a battle of survival.

Chidambaram's tweets seem to show the contradiction in the two minister's statements, questioning the apparent non-payment of dues to MSMEs while also adding to their outstanding loans, NDTV reported.

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