New Delhi: In perhaps his strongest attack yet on the Narendra Modi government over demonetisation, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Friday compared the exercise to a terror attack and said those behind the “vicious” assault have yet to be brought to justice.
His remarks against the government came on the third anniversary of the demonetisation of high-value currency in 2016. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced to the nation on November 8 that year that Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes would cease to be a legal tender from midnight.
“It’s 3 years since the Demonetisation terror attack that devastated the Indian economy, taking many lives, wiping out lakhs of small businesses & leaving millions of Indians unemployed. Those behind this vicious attack have yet to be brought to justice,” Gandhi tweeted.
Several economy watchers have held that demonetisation had hit the unorganised sector the hardest causing loss of jobs and initiating a spiral effect in which consumption declined due to loss of earning, particularly in rural sector. The current economic slowdown has partly been blamed on the aftereffects of the note ban.
In a televised address at 8pm on November 8, 2016, Prime Minister Modi had said that the decision was taken to counter corruption, hoarding of black money and terror funding. Nearly 86 per cent of all currency notes in circulation were devalued.
Congress’ Priyanka Gandhi also attacked the Modi government for claiming that demonetisation was a “slayer of all evils”, saying it proved to be a “disaster” that has all but destroyed the economy.
“3 years since Demonetisation and every claim made by the government and those hailing it as a slayer of all evils has been turned on its head. It proved to be a disaster that has all but destroyed our economy,” Priyanka Gandhi said in a tweet. “Anyone want to claim responsibility?” the Congress general secretary said, using the hashtag ‘DeMonetisation Disaster’.
Congress’ chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala also hit out at Prime Minister Modi for the move, describing him as “today’s Tughlaq”. “Sultan Muhammad bin Tughlaq rendered the country’s currency useless in the year 1330. Today’s Tughlaq did the same on November 8, 2016,” he said in a tweet.
“3 years have passed and the country is suffering because- economy collapsed, employment lost. Neither terrorism stopped, nor the business of fake notes,” he said, and asked who is responsible.