Eco shrank 6.6% in FY21

India’s economy contracted by 6.6% in 2020-21, narrower than the earlier estimate of 7.3% decline, highlighting that the economic damage inflicted by one of the strictest lockdowns in the world to ward off spread of coronavirus was less severe than estimated earlier.

Data released by the National Statistical Office on Monday also showed that the economic slowdown was sharper at 3. 7% expansion compared to the earlier estimate of 4% growth for 2019-20.

The use of latest available data from various agencies has resulted in some changes in both the levels of GVA and growth estimates for 2018-19 and 2019-20, the NSO said. The 7.3% contraction was the sharpest in nearly four decades as the Covid-19 induced lockdown had hurt the economy. But the revised data seems to show that the damage was lower than what was expected. The lockdown had hurt several key sectors of the economy, particularly the contact intensive sectors, such as tourism, hospitality, aviation and others.

The agriculture sector has been the mainstay of the economic revival, that has taken place after lifting of curbs. The sharp contraction had triggered a debate over the management of the economy and impact of lockdown.

Production of eight infrastructure sectors expanded by 3.8% in December 2021 against a 0.4% contraction in the same month last year on better show by coal, cement and refinery products, according to the official data released on Monday.

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