Niti Aayog’s Rajiv Kumar faces EC heat, asked to explain remarks on Rahul’s minimum income scheme

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The Election Commission of India (ECI) has asked Nitin Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar to explain his remark made on Congress president Rahul Gandhis proposed minimum income guarantee scheme. According to a report in The Indian Express, the poll body has asked Kumar to respond within two days. Kumar had dismissed Rahul Gandhis promise of a minimum income support of Rs 72,000 annually to families earning below Rs 12,000 monthly saying the grand old party can say and do anything to win elections. The proposed Nyunatam Aay Yojana (NYAY) would increase fiscal deficit, he had told news agency ANI on Monday. The Model Code of Conduct (MCC) came into effect on March 10. It forbids the use of government machineries and officials for the interest of the party in power. The poll code ensures a level-playing field for all political parties and candidates fighting elections. His comments have been sought, On Monday, Rahul Gandhi announced that if his party returns to power, he will launch a scheme under which families earning below Rs 12,000 monthly will get a minimum income support of Rs 72,000 annually. This, he said, will benefit 5 crore families and 25 crore individuals directly. Congress guarantees that 20% of the most poor families will be given Rs 72,000 crore every year. The amount will be transferred directly to the accounts of 20% of the poorest families, he had said. He said the scheme would be the Congress major poll promise and termed it as a final assault on poverty. Reacting to the announcement, Niti Ayayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar said that the Congress can go to any extent to win election. They say and do anything to win elections. Poverty was removed in 1966, One Rank One Pension was later implemented, everyone received proper education under Right of Education! So you see then can say and do anything, Kumar also expressed fear the the fiscal deficit may rise from 3.5% to 6% if the scheme is implemented. Lashing out at former Finance minister for raising the fiscal deficit from 2.5% to 6% during Manmohan Singh government, he said the scheme will take the country four steps back. 5% to 6%. It Rahul Gandhi today made the announcement without thinking about its impact on the economy. We will take four steps back due to this scheme, The scheme, according to him, could prompt all the credit rating agencies to downgrade the countrys ratings and New Delhi may not get loans from outside. Rajiv Kumar has been NITI Aayogs Vice Chairman since September 1, 2017.

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