Hitting back Finance Minister Arun Jaitley for accusing it of being obstructionist in Parliament, Congress said it exposes Bharatiya Janata Party’s “hypocricy and double standards” as the party had frequently “derailed” legislative business while it was in Opposition.
Terming Jaitley’s charge as “misleading and unwarranted”, Deputy Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha and Congress leader Anand Sharma said that the credit for Parliament’s functioning and passage of bills during the current winter session goes to Congress as it respects the institution as a “responsible” Opposition.
“The statement of Finance Minister Arun Jaitley accusing the Congress party of being obstructionist in Parliament is misleading and unwarranted. Finance Minister wants to be reminded that it was Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) which as Opposition party resorted to frequent disruptions in Parliament,” Sharma said.
He accused the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of opposing the Economic Reforms and opening of FDI in many sectors, including Civil Aviation, Insurance and Multi-Brand Retail.
“Arun Jaitley was the leader of Opposition when Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) derailed the legislative business in Parliament in furtherance of its partisan agenda. No business was transacted in many sessions.
“It is ironic that the Finance Minister has now conveniently forgotten Bharatiya Janata Party’s role and the accusation against Congress speaks of Bharatiya Janata Party’s hypocrisy and double standards,” he said.
Accusing Congress of following an obstructionist approach, Jaitley had yesterday said the government was committed to going ahead with reforms measures to take India back to original potential of 8 per cent economic growth.
“Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government are busy promoting crony capitalism and have to yet address the structural issues of the economy,” Sharma said.
Terming Jaitley’s claims of turning economy around and ensuring more capital inflows as “exaggerated and fallacious”, Sharma said that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government “inherited” a healthy economy with both fiscal and current account deficit under control.
“The macro fundamentals of the economy were strong as the FOREX reserves were over 300 billion US dollars and exports stood at 323 billion,” Sharma said.
“The budget session of Parliament and the ongoing winter session has seen informed discussions and debates on matters of national interest and concern.
“The credit for Parliament’s functioning and passage of bills belongs to Congress which as a responsible opposition party respects the institution of Parliament,” Sharma said.
He said that the government has claimed credit for 5.7 per cent of the GDP growth in quarter one of the current financial year. The fact is that of the 90 days of the first quarter, UPA was in office for 56 days. The decline of Q2 to 5.3 per cent is an indication that capital formation and job creation is less than expected, he said.
He said that there is a need to understand that the crude oil prices have fallen by 39 dollars which will reduce deficit by USD 39 billion. Inspite of the reduction in the oil import bill, the imports are rising and exports have fallen, he said.
He said that it should be a concern to the government that the inflow of FDI is less than the outgoing FDI and the capital inflow is more in debt and credit as compared to equity.