Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram on Friday hit out at the BJP-led government at the Centre for not releasing the complete data of Index of Industrial Production for April 2020 and wondered if it would lock them up in a safe vault to be opened after 20 years.
"Economy is in safe hands, says the FM. It is in such 'safe' hands that the government will not release the IIP numbers for April 2020! Will the government lock up the IIP numbers in a safe vault to be opened only after 20 years," he asked on Twitter.
The month of April saw imposition of a lockdown across the country to contain the COVID pandemic.
In view of the lockdown, industrial activity was badly hit during the month.
The government on Friday held back the release of complete data of index of industrial production for April, saying it is not appropriate to compare the IIP data with earlier months due to COVID-19 lockdown.
An official statement showed that the IIP -- which measures factory output in the country -- stood at 56.3 points in April, 2020 compared to 126 in the same month a year ago.
"In view of the preventive measures and announcement of nationwide lockdown by the government to contain spread of COVID-19 pandemic, majority of the industrial sector establishments were not operating from the end of March, 2020 onwards.
"This has had an impact on the items being produced by the establishments during the month of April, 2020, where a number of responding units have reported NIL production," Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation said in the statement issued on Friday.
Consequently, it is not appropriate to compare the IIP of April, 2020 with earlier months and users may like to observe the changes in IIP in the following months. These Quick Estimates will undergo revision in subsequent releases as per the revision policy of IIP, it added.
The Quick Estimates of IIP are released on 12th of every month (or previous working day) with a six-week lag and compiled with data received from source agencies, who in turn receive the data from the producing factories/ establishments.
For April 2020, the Quick Estimates of IIP with base 2011-12 stand at 56.3, the statement said.
(With PTI inputs)