The current and former ministers are embroiled in an argument over statistical manipulation. One of them is the current Planning Minister MA Mannan. Another is former BNP commerce minister Amir Khasru Mahmud Chowdhury. They got involved in this debate in a dialogue organized in the capital today on the budget.

Taking part in the dialogue, former commerce minister Amir Khasru Mahmud Chowdhury alleged that the government was manipulating to increase gross domestic product or GDP growth. In response, the present Planning Minister MA Mannan said that the construction of Padma Bridge, Metro Rail or Karnafuli Tunnel cannot be done by manipulating statistics. And the electricity that has reached the homes of the people of the country or the average life expectancy of the people has exceeded 70, cannot be achieved by manipulating statistics.

Amir Khasru Mahmud Chowdhury and MA Mannan gave contradictory statements in a dialogue organized by the Center for Policy Dialogue (CPD), a private research institute, on the budget announced for the fiscal year 2022-23 at the Lakeshore Hotel in the capital on Thursday.

Speaking as a special guest in the dialogue, Amir Khasru Mahmud Chowdhury alleged that the government was ‘manipulating’ the statistics. When the BNP government was in power in 2008, the score of the country as per the World Bank statistics was 70, now it has come down to almost half. The government is manipulating to increase the GDP growth rate.

Besides, Amir Khasru Mahmud Chowdhury also questioned the legitimacy of the government. He says there is plenty of room for questioning the budget of an ‘unelected’ government.

Reacting to Amir Khasru Mahmud’s remarks, MA Mannan, in his speech as the chief guest, said that the word ‘unelected’ used by Amir Khasru Mahmud Chowdhury has become a clich. People’s ears are ringing when they hear this. The present government is not unelected, it is an effective government. At the time, the planning minister called on the BNP to come out of negative politics and said, “As long as the BNP discusses these issues, it will remain isolated from the people.

Speaking as the chief guest, the planning minister said the biggest problem in the country now is inflation. Although many have questioned the inflation figures, he did not admit it, saying the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS) compiles inflation figures on a much larger scale. Collects information from all places. The minister said there was a need for separate indicators for low-income people. If that is done, it will be understood how much the effect of inflation is on them. However, it is true that low-income people suffer the most from inflation.


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