‘Govt Revising Or Suppressing Uncomfortable Data’: 108 Economists, Social Scientists Raise Concern

‘Govt Revising Or Suppressing Uncomfortable Data’: 108 Economists, Social Scientists Raise Concern

The experts have appealed to all professional economists, statisticians and researchers to come together to raise their voice against the tendency “to suppress uncomfortable data”.

 

NEW DELHI — 108 economists and social scientists have expressed concerns over “political interference” in statistical data in India and called for the restoration of “institutional independence” and integrity of statistical organisations.

Their appeal comes against the backdrop of controversy over revision of gross domestic product (GDP) numbers and withholding employment data by the NSSO.

In a joint statement released on Thursday, they said that for decades, India’s statistical machinery enjoyed a high-level of reputation for the integrity of the data it produced on a range of economic and social parameters.

“It (statistical machinery) was often criticised for the quality of its estimates, but never were allegations made of political interference influencing decisions and the estimates themselves,” they said in an appeal.

HuffPost India’s recent report showed how the government inflated e-governance data to boost its Digital India initiative.

In their statement, the experts have appealed to all professional economists, statisticians and independent researchers to come together to raise their voice against the tendency “to suppress uncomfortable data” and impress upon the government to restore access and integrity to public statistics and re-establish institutional independence.

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