India's economy slows, stalling once thriving manufacturing
Confidence giving way to uncertainty
Seven years later, he's had to lay off half his workers as drooping sales caused his profit to plummet by at least 80%.
Confidence in the Indian economy is giving way to uncertainty as growth in the labor-intensive manufacturing sector has come to a near standstill, braking to 0.6% in the last quarter from 12.1% in the same period a year earlier.
Car deliveries in August dropped 41% from a year earlier, truck and bus sales fell 39% and motorcycle sales, a key indicator of the health of the economy in rural India, sank 22%.
"This is a trickle-down impact of the slowdown," said the association's director general Vinnie Mehta.
No segment of the industry has been spared
The 15 workers in Kapoor's plant in a Delhi suburb make clutch buttons used in heavy duty trucks and tractors.
Hunt for black money
Mid-size and small businesses, the backbone of much of India's economy, are still suffering from the combined consequences of both reforms, economists say.
"The auto components market still functions without any billing system and more than 50% of our market is still cash-driven," said Kapoor. "How do we file tax returns when sellers don't give us any bills?"
Supply chains, production and job markets were all disrupted, Ghosh said.
Measures of consumer confidence have weakened amid growing pessimism over jobs and the economy in general.
"Demonetisation pulled the rug under the feet of India's cash economy and the informal sector was the worst hit. The much-hyped reform triggered the current economic slowdown," said Dr. Pronab Sen, India's former chief economic adviser and the director of the India program at the London School of Economics' International Growth Center.
To counter that, in August the Reserve Bank of India transferred $24 billion to the cash-starved government to help support stimulus measures, prompting criticism from opposition parties that it compromised the central bank's autonomy.
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman recently announced piecemeal policy reforms to stimulate the economy.
"We are conscious that we need to respond," she said.
For workers with no guarantee of a paycheck or other protections, the slowdown can mean just going hungry. Such troubles were evident on a recent morning at a worker pickup area about 25 kilometers (15 miles) east of Delhi.
Making a living
Now, he spends more time standing on a corner waiting for jobs than he does working, and averages less than half that amount.
"There is work for a day or two, and then nothing for the next five days," he said. "Some days we have to sleep (on an) empty stomach."