This Article is From Jan 11, 2020

Will Not Support Fiscal Tightening, Says Abhijit Banerjee Ahead Of Budget

Abhijit Banerjee, the Nobel laureate, said that fiscal deficit has already been breached by a huge margin and it is no big deal to breach it more

Abhijit Banerjee: Centre's plans to cut education budget will not have much impact


Ahead of the upcoming Union budget, Nobel laureate Prof Abhijit Banerjee on Saturday said that he would not support "fiscal tightening right now." "Fiscal deficit has been breached by a huge margin already. In that sense, I do not think that it is a big deal to breach it more. I would not be supporting fiscal tightening right now," Mr Banerjee said at a press conference here.

Reacting to questions about the Centre's plans to cut the education budget by approximately Rs 3,000 crore, Mr Banerjee said that it would not have much of an impact as education is a state subject.

"To be honest, the central government provides very less funds for education as education is a state subject. The union government cutting Rs 3000 crore from the education budget is actually like a drop in the ocean as it is controlled by the state," Mr Banerjee said.

"I think we should focus on doing more with the resources we have, our teachers are paid among the highest in the world relative to the GDP per capita; we should therefore be getting them to perform better," he added.

The Union Budget will be presented by Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in February 2020.