Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi on Monday lashed out at the Government over the economic slowdown and a continued depression in the Indian automobile industry.

Tweeting in Hindi, Priyanka asked, “The economy is falling into a deep abyss of recession. A sword is hanging on the livelihood of millions of Indians. The decline in the auto sector is a sign of negative growth in production-transportation and the declining confidence of the market. When will the government open its eyes?”

Her remarks come as the auto industry suffered its worst-ever monthly sales performance in August.

SIAM (Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers) on Monday released data which showed that the total sales of the Indian auto sector declined by 23.55 per cent in August to 1,821,490 units from 2,382,436 units sold during the corresponding month of the previous year.

According to the data, the utility vehicles sale declined by 2.20 per cent to 71,478, whereas van’s off-take went down by 47.36 per cent to 9,089 units against the year-ago month. Passenger car sales plunged by 41.09 per cent to 115,957 units against 196,847 units sold in August 2018.

Overall, passenger vehicle sales declined by 31.57 per cent in August to 196, 524 units against 287,198 units in the year-ago corresponding month.

In the commercial vehicle segment, sales were down by 38.71 per cent to 51, 897 units. The sale of three-wheelers declined by 6.93 per cent to 58,818 units in August. In case of two-wheelers, which include scooters, motorcycles and mopeds, the sale edged lower by 22.24 per cent to 1,514,196 units.

The sales decline has dented production, causing job losses.