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Jairam Ramesh says small businesses spent 10 years suffering in ‘Anyay Kaal’ through anti-MSME govt policy

Congress leader Jairam Ramesh in a series of posts on X on Monday blamed the Narendra Modi-led central government for alleged business challenges faced by India’s micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs).

Citing different media reports, Ramesh said the small businesses of India have spent 10 years suffering in this Anyay Kaal, through neglect or through malicious anti-MSME policy.

“It is a well-established fact that Narendra Modi has spent the last decade working only for his few chosen friends. As a result, MSMEs have contributed to the lowest fraction of GDP in decades, face the highest tax rates in decades, and are dealing with severe job losses and price rise. Thousands of MSMEs have been shutting down,” Ramesh noted. 

The senior leader from the grand old party said there are six major issues relating to “Modi-Made MSME Mismanagement” including “demonetisation, shoddy GST implementation, policies favour crony corporates, ill-conceived income tax 45-day payment rule, uncontrolled dumping of Chinese goods and MSME Board has been captured by BJP cronies.” 

Ramesh said demonetisation did nothing to curb black money or counterfeit currency in India. “Unable to pay employees or repay their debts, many small businesses were forced to close. Business systematically moved from smaller firms to bigger, more organised players. An RBI study has shown that MSMEs were the worst affected by demonetisation.” he added. 

On GST implementation, Ramesh said BJP failed to consider how policy changes will impact MSMEs, citing a survey by SMERA Ratings Ltd that showed 60 per cent of MSME respondents felt that their systems were not ready for the new tax regime. 
Ramesh also posted about policies “made only for crony industrialists”. For instance, “a Rs1.84 lakh crore handout was given in the form of reduced taxes to corporates in 2019. However, these tax cuts did not apply to small businesses registered as sole proprietorships and partnerships.”  

Further, on electoral bonds, Ramesh said that BJP, having taken Rs 8,000 crore from large corporates as electoral bonds ‘chanda’, the BJP’s quid-pro-quo only extends to those large corporates who can afford to pay huge bribes. MSMEs trying to conduct business honestly are left out.