The Congress party today launched a coordinated attack against Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s demonetisation drive. While in Nagpur, former Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram declared demonetisation as the “biggest scam” of the year, Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi claimed in Dadri, Uttar Pradesh that the country will suffer because of this decision for many years. “This (note ban) is the biggest scam of the year and must be investigated,” Chidambaram said.
While announcing the decision to demonetise old Rs 500 and Rs 1000 currency notes on November 8, PM Modi had said people would have to suffer for 50 days because of the decision but situation would normalise after December 30.
Here we present top 10 points raised by Congress leaders against demonetisation and PM Modi:
1. Modi behaving like a king
Talking to locals in Dadri, Rahul said, “Just like kings who just want to speak, our PM also just want to keep speaking.”
2. Country will suffer for years
Rahul said, “The cash crisis due to demonetisation will not end in 50 days. Hindustan will suffer because of this for several years.”
3. Demonetisation to fund a few industrialists’ Rs 8 lakh crore bad loans
Rahul alleged that demonetisation has been done to help a few corporates who have Rs 8 lakh crore bad loans in their names in banks. “A few big businessmen have taken Rs 8 lakh crore loans from banks, which they are not paying back. PM cannot bring back money from them as they were the ones to market him. Hence, PM has made you stand in lines for banks to function,” the Congres Vice-President said.
4. What’s the point of going cashless, when there is no cash left with the poor
“PM talks about making the society cashless but the society has already become cashless because of this move, people are suffering. When cashless society will come, farmers will never understand how their 5% money went directly to the pockets of rich industrialists,” said Rahul.
Chidambaram commented, “It is like motherhood and apple pie. No one speaks against them, similarly, no one will speak against cashless society. To assume that India will go from 3% to 100% cashless in a matter of few months is an outlandish expectation.”
5. Thieves getting crores from back gates of banks, not the poor
Rahul said, “You are getting just Rs 2000 and thieves are easily getting Rs 50-100 crores from backdoors of banks. No rich person is standing in the bank queue for money. Have you seen any rich person standing in a queue?”
6. PM’s narrative keeps changing
Chidambaram alleged, “The demonetisation goal post is shifting. It is no longer about black money. Now they have found a new one called the cashless economy. This is an absurd move by the government. No one has any good word to say on this.”
Similarly, Rahul said: “PM’s narrative has changed over time. First, it was a fight against black money, then terrorism and now it is about making society cashless.”
7. Demonetisation is a war against the poor
“PM Modi waged a war against poor people on November 8. The PM made all honest people stand in a queue,” said Rahul. Chidambaram charged, “This is an illusion that it is intended to hurt the rich and benefit the poor. I don’t see any rich man getting affected. Just because people are not protesting in the manner you are suggesting, that does not mean they are condoning what the government is doing. I believe people will not forget for what is being done to them and will certain not forgive the government for it.”
The former Finance Minister further said that demonetisation is a “thoughtless move. No one in the world has a good word for it. Every major newspaper and economists has condemned it.”
8. PM is trivialising a major blow to India’s economy
“You can’t trivialise a major blow to India’s economy. I am sorry that PM is trivialising a major development in Indian economy. I am affected. I am not being able to get my Rs 24000 and therefore I am complaining,” said Chidambaram.
9. Government consulted no one before demonetisation
“There are over a 100 officers involved in budget making. Till today it has never leaked. What secrecy is this (demonetisation)? Nobody was consulted. The government should have consulted at least Yashwant Sinha, he is their own man. They could have consulted Mr Manmohan Singh,” said Chidambaram
10. Demonetisation to cause more trouble than a natural calamity
“Even a natural calamity might not cause so much of trouble. The pain and sufferings people are facing in India especially rural India is indescribable, worse than a natural calamity,” said Chidambaram.
“Inflation has gone down because demand has gone down. But when there is no demand, no production is happening. These numbers matter. Look at the numbers, credit growth is the lowest in 20 years, green field investments and aggregate demand have gone down. Confidence in the Indian economy has been severely dented by the number of measures but the most important being demonetisation,” he added.
(With agency inputs)