India, Oct. 18 -- Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman doubled down on her criticism of the UPA government's handling of public sectors banks and attacked former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh personally Thursday, saying he had "looked the other way" as "wrong-doings" mounted and "cronies" cornered loans on his watch,

Sitharaman was responding to Singh's criticism of her criticism of him and former RBI governor Raghuram Rajan for the poor state of public sector banks and Singh's remarks that the BJP government was "obsessed" with fixing blame for the slowdown instead of finding a way to revive the economy.

Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the annual World Bank Group meetings, Finance Minister Sitharaman also expressed optimism ab...