News Karnataka
Tuesday, January 31 2023

I was not afraid of speaking to press, says former PM Manmohan Singh

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New Delhi: Former Prime Minister Manmohan took a jibe at his successor Narendra Modi for avoiding the media and said that it was unfair to fall him ‘silent’. He also opined that he was not just an ‘accidental Prime Minister’, but an ‘accidental Finance Minister’ too.

“People say I was a silent Prime Minister. But I wasn’t the Prime Minister who was afraid of talking to the press. I met the press regularly, and after every foreign trip I undertook, I gave a press conference,” Singh said on the sidelines of an event held to release his book Changing India- a set of five volumes that details Singh’s life as an economist as well as his 10-year period at the helm of affair in the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance.

Prime Minister Modi has been often criticised for not interacting with the press even once after his historic victory in 2014.

However, Singh remained combative when the press shot question on farm loan waiver announced by the new Congress governments in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. “The chief minister announced it because we have to honour the commitments made in the election manifesto of states that went to the polls,” he said, adding that he has not studied the likely impact of the move yet.

A question on the government trying to get its hands on the monetary reserves kept in the Reserve Bank of India also went unanswered, with the former Prime Minister (who, incidentally, had served as the central bank’s governor in the 1980s) restricting himself to hoping that the two institutions would “find ways and means to work in harmony with each other”.

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