In a bad news for the new government on day one, Central Statistics Office (CSO) data showed that economic growth slowed to a 5-year low of 5.8 percent in the fourth quarter of 2018-19, pushing India behind China, due to a poor showing by agriculture and manufacturing sectors.
The CSO released a worrisome set of data on the rate of unemployment for 2017-18, confirming the pre-election leaked report's claim of joblessness at a 45-year high of 6.1 percent.
Chief Statistician Pravin Srivastava, however, emphasised that the latest labour survey cannot be compared with previous ones and said that he doesn't want to "claim that is 45-year low or high" as it is a different matrix.
The growth of the eight core sector industries during April too witnessed a slowdown. The expansion was at a rate of 2.6 percent. These industries contribute about 40 percent to the overall factory output of the country.
There was, however, some relief on the front of government finances as the fiscal deficit for 2018-19 remained within the revised Budget target of 3.4 percent of the GDP.
So what is the message from these numbers and where do we go from here? To discuss this issue, CNBC-TV18's Latha Venkatesh spoke with Abhishek Upadhyay, senior economist at I-Sec PD; Sajjid Chinoy, chief India economist at JPMorgan and Sudipto Mundle, former chairman of National Statistical Commission.(With inputs from PTI)