Defending the Central Government’s demonetisation move, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Sunday said that it has resulted in the decline of terror incidents and added that number of stone pelting incidents have also reduced significantly. “You are having terrorist incidents (now), but the fact that you were finding 5,000-10,000 stone throwers being provided with money by the terrorist organisations, why is it that in the last 8-10 months it has not happened?” he was quoted as saying by PTI. Jaitley made his remarks while in a keynote address – via video conferencing to the Berkeley India Conference yesterday ahead of his visit to the US to interact with the corporate world and attend the annual meeting of IMF and World Bank in Washington DC.
PTI reports that Finance Minister was refuting the impression that transformational initiatives like ‘Swachh Bharat’, GST and demonetisation have not resulted in any changes on the ground. Jaitley also trained his guns at Congress here. He said the Congress party is unlikely to substantially expand itself unless it “selects its leaders based on calibre and potential”, and goes back to its original centrist position.
Jaitley added that main challenge before the Congress party is two fold. The BJP leader asserted that Congress occupied the centrist space in India conventionally. He however, indicated the kind of change in its governance that has happened. “In the last few years, if I may say so, this process started in 2004 with the establishment of National Advisory Council and has continued, and today I find that the position that they take on most issues is not the conventional Congress party’s centrist positions,” Jaitley was quoted as saying.