Chandigarh, February 13
Lashing out at the Modi-led central government over its failure to secure the nation’s borders from continued militant influx despite its tall claims in the wake of the so-called surgical strikes, Punjab Congress president Captain Amarinder Singh on Monday pointed out that the much-touted demonetisation move had clearly failed to check either the inflow of terrorists or fake currency from Pakistan into India.
In a statement issued here, the Congress chief ministerial candidate said Sunday’s encounter in Kashmir and reports of Pakistan pushing fake Rs. 2000 currency into India via Bangladesh were proof enough that the ill-conceived notebandi decision was not helping curb terror, as claimed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Stronger and sterner measures were needed to ensure fool-proof border security if the nation and its people were to be guarded against frequent external assaults, said Captain Amarinder.
Clearly, demonetistion, which continued to create serious problems for the common man more than three months after it was announced, was not the solution to a serious problem like terrorism, said Captain Amarinder, adding that the notebandi had completely failed in its avowed objectives of cracking down on terrorism and black money.
Apart from continuing incursions from across the border, there was sufficient ground to believe that black money remained a serious concern despite a whopping 86% old currency getting frozen overnight following the demonetisation, the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) president pointed out, citing reports of frequent seizures of large sums of unaccounted for, new currency.
Captain Amarinder also questioned the continued imposition of cash curbs on the people, demanding to know how depriving the common man of his own hard-earned money was helping the government crack down on terrorism and black money.
The PPCC chief pointed out that despite repeated demands from the Congress party to come out in the open with facts and figures to substantiate his claims of the success of the scheme, Modi had failed to disclose the total amount of black money that had come into the government kitty in the wake of the notebandi. This showed that the demonetisation had failed to achieve any positive results, he added.
Captain Amarinder charged the prime minister with reckless abuse of power to plunge the country into total chaos through his ill-planned demonetisation move, which had claimed several innocent lives and continued to plague the ordinary people more than 90 days after it was initiated. Thousands of people had lost their jobs, small businesses had to shut down and investments had come to a freeze in the wake of the demonetisation, he observed, questioning the rationale of the move.
Modi should have spent some time analyzing the pros and cons of the move before initiating it, or at least taken the trouble to check out its impact in the days and weeks after the announcement, said Captain Amarinder.
Captain Amarinder urged the prime minister to shed his ego and take immediate steps to ease the woes of the demonetisation-hit people of the country. Instead of spending his time targeting his opponents on frivolous issues, Modi should take stock of the situation arising out of his senseless policy and find ways of addressing it, he added.