Manmohan Singh to Modi: ‘Learn from Siddaramaiah’

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New Delhi | Published: May 7, 2018 1:48:08 PM

Karnataka election 2018: Manmohan Singh also took the opportunity to heap praise on Siddaramaiah's style of leadership. He said that the Karnataka CM handled the drought situation effectively in the state.

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Karnataka elections 2018: Former prime minister Manmohan Singh today launched a blistering attack on BJP-led NDA government over alleged economic mismanagement. Singh said “it is slowly eroding the trust of the people in the banking system.” Addressing media in Bengaluru, where Congress bigwigs have been camping from last few days to give a final push to the party’s campaign, Singh said that growth rate under the present dispensation is lower than the erstwhile Congress-led UPA, despite favourable global conditions and changes brought in the calculation method.

Singh, who was accompanied by senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad and spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala, said people are suffering due to skyrocketing fuel prices. “High petrol prices have made the situation worse and mismanagement of the government evident,” he said. Singh claimed the government has earned over Rs 10 lakh crore by increasing taxes on petrol. He added the country is going through a tough phase and farmers’ are experiencing difficulties under the current regime.

Singh also took the opportunity to heap praise on Siddaramaiah’s style of leadership. He said that the Karnataka CM handled the drought situation effectively in the state. “Siddaramaiah has provided a dynamic and progressive leadership to Karnataka. He has dealt with the drought effectively and provided timely assistance to farmers,” he said while hoping Prime Minister Narendra Modi will learn and implement development lessons from the state. “We hope PM Modi will learn and implement development lessons from the State.”

Terming demonetisation and implementation of Goods and Services Tax (GST) as two major “avoidable blunders” of the Modi government, Singh said the noteban and new tax regime dealt a blow to the rural economy and to the common man. He said that “losses the economy suffered due to these blunders have severely hurt our micro small and medium enterprise sector.”

“These decisions have also resulted in the loss of tens of thousands of jobs,” he noted.

On Nirav Modi, the former prime minister slammed the government for blaming the Congress. He said that something was going around in 2015-16, “Yet the Modi government didn’t do anything’. “If blame has to be cast, it has to be on the government of mandate,” he said.

Several top Congress leaders have been campaigning aggressively in the state to ensure party retains power in the southern state. Karnataka is the only big state where the grand old party is in power. Since 2014 general elections, the party has tasted only defeats in all elections except in Punjab. The election is crucial because the party sees this as an opportunity to revive its cadres ahead of the next year’s Lok Sabha polls.

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