Meghalaya Governor Tathagata Roy, who has stirred controversy in the past with his comments, has criticised Nobel Prize winner Abhijit Banerjee for conceptualising the NYAY scheme of the Congress.
At the same time Mr Roy in his tweets said he was proud of the achievements of Mr Banerjee, who along with Esther Duflo, his French-American wife and Michael Kremer, another economist, has won the coveted prize for the ''experimental approach to alleviating global poverty''.
Mr Roy had tweeted on October 14 when the winners of the prize were announced.
The Meghalaya governor said I personally believe NYAY was a crazy and harebrained scheme. Even the progenitor of that scheme isn't mentioning it any more. Thankfully Mr Banerjee and Ms Duflo did not get the prize for NYAY. I am told he got it for some good experimental work, not anything fundamental.
NYAY or Nyuntam Aay Yojana is a minimum income guarantee scheme of the Congress and was conceptualised before the Lok Sabha polls in 2019 and made a prominent election plank.
Stating that he was proud of Mr Banerjee's achievement, the governor said in another tweet I feel proud as an Indian and a Kolkatan. It is merely his Indian blood that gave me a feeling of pride. Just as I felt proud of Hargobind Khorana, S Chandrasekhar or V Ramakrishnan. After all, even Zionist Jews are proud of Karl Marx!
Mr Banerjee is an alumnus of South Point School and Presidency College (now University) of Kolkata.
Mr Roy also said that he has never heard of Abhijit Banerjee before. But then, I am not an economist ...," he tweeted.
Speaking to PTI on the sidelines of a programme, Mr Roy said he had criticised the NYAY scheme because the source of finances for the scheme was not mentioned.
There was no indication from where the finances would come from (to implement the scheme). That is all I wanted to say, he added.
Mr Roy had courted controversy with his statements against the Trianmool Congress government in West Bengal and on other issues, including on Rohingyas and Kashmir, since his days as the Tripura governor.