On January 31, The Print had published a story quoting “Congress party leaders” saying that Nobel Prize-winning economist Angus Deaton and French economist Thomas Piketty were working with the Congress party to develop the minimum income policy.
Newslaundry subsequently reached out to Deaton and Piketty on February 5 to confirm these claims. Deaton denied any involvement with the Congress and Piketty has not responded yet.
Today, The Print confirmed Piketty’s involvement in the Congress’s framing of the minimum income policy, as promised by Rahul Gandhi. The report quotes Piketty as saying he was “ exchanging with the Congress together with Abhijit Banerjee (MIT) about how much it would cost and how to implement this”. Piketty also says, “My view is that a minimum income scheme would be highly welcome.”
Importantly, the story said Deaton had denied his involvement to The Print as well: “The Print had reported on 31 January, quoting top Congress leaders as saying that Piketty and Angus Deaton, the British economist who won the Nobel Prize in 2015, were advising the Congress on its poll promise. Deaton, however, denied it to ThePrint, saying that no one from the Congress had contacted him.”
Despite this, the January 31 story hasn’t been edited or corrected to reflect Deaton statement. The January 31 piece had gone into detail on how Deaton has worked extensively on topics in an Indian context, adding that he’d co-authored works with “Jean Dreze, a former member of Sonia Gandhi-led National Advisory Council during the UPA regime”. Though Deaton has clearly said that it’s untrue, The Print hasn’t issued a correction yet.