CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury on Sunday said the Centre merely talks about ‘aatmanirbhar’ or self-reliant India but its actions of “selling off” PSUs amounted to ‘aatmasamarpan’ (surrender) of the country’s resources to “capitalists”. In his webcast address to CPI(M) workers from Maharashtra, Yechury said the government was in the process of selling off PSUs and even the Railways is being privatised.
“Citizens of the country are owners of its resources and the government is just a manager. It cannot sell off resources without the consent of owners,” Yechury said. He said the ‘New India’ narrative is actually about changing the character of the secular fabric of the country.
The idea of ‘atmanirbhar’ Bharat or self-reliant India was proposed by prime minister Narendra Modi during the announcement of the coronavirus pandemic related economic package in May this year. The Left leader alleged that wealth of “capitalists” increased during the coronavirus-enforced lockdown in the country. “The prime minister had said India would defeat the coronavirus in 21 days, but now 130 days are passed under the national lockdown,” he said.
With the COVID-19 pandemic showing no signs of abating, the government has decided to lift restrictions and has put the onus on state governments, Yechury said. “A four-hour notice had been given (by the Centre) for imposition of a complete lockdown, just like the the four-hour notice period for (banknote) demonetisation (in 2016). We are still reeling under its impact and the economy has not been revived,” he said.
Yechury said PM Modi had wrongfully compared the Ram Janmabhoomi movement with the Independence movement of the country. “The freedom struggle was about uniting the country to achieve freedom, but now the country is seeing polarisation, hatred and violence. Pillars of the Constitution are being weakened,” he alleged.