Cong charts Nov 8 protest plan

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on January 09, 2018

Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi and senior party leader P Chidambaram at the AICC headquarters in New Delhi on Monday   -  PTI

To hold candlelight vigils and rallies on note-ban anniversary

The Congress will observe November 8, the first anniversary of demonetisation, as a black day. That day, the party will conduct rallies and protest marches across the country and hold candlelight vigils to commemorate people who had died in bank and ATM queues following the withdrawal of high value notes.

Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi chaired a meeting of Congress general secretaries and AICC in-charges of States to chart out the “strategies” for the day. The party has decided on a theme, ‘India Continues to Suffer’, for the protests, where other Opposition parties may also join. Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and former Finance Minister P Chidambaram were also present at the meeting.

Rahul told reporters after the meeting that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has destroyed the country’s economy with the note ban and a badly drafted GST. Modi fails to understand the pain of the people and that is why the Centre plans to celebrate the first anniversary of demonetisation, he added.

“The Prime Minster is not able to understand the feeling of the people and the hurt and sadness these two decisions have caused,” he said.

Later, the party’s chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala told reporters that protests will be held in every district and State headquarters across the country. “Demonetisation was the biggest scam of the century,” he said. “Congress party workers will take to the streets in every district and State headquarters to reflect the pain, anger and agony of the people. Sadly, a government drunk with power and blinded by arrogance has the audacity to celebrate the ‘surgical strike’ on the economy. People will never pardon the BJP.”

Where’s the money?

He urged Modi to explain where has the black money gone. “An RBI report reflects that out of ₹15.44 lakh crore money in circulation at the time of demonetisation on November 8, 2016, ₹15.28 lakh crore has been received back,” Surjewala said.

“It means that only ₹16,000 crore did not come back, so far. On the contrary, the Prime Minister and Finance Minister had claimed that demonetisation would result in non-deposit of ₹3-5 lakh crore of black money.

“On December 10, 2016; Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi told the Supreme Court that the government expects ₹10-11 lakh crore out of a total of ₹15 lakh crore.”

He added that only ₹41 crore currency was found to be fake out of the total currency notes received post demonetisation. “Post-demonetisation, there have been 50 major terror incidents in Jammu & Kashmir alone, in which 80 jawans have been martyred and 51 civilians killed. Also, there have been 17 major Naxal attacks after demonetisation, in which 69 security personnel were martyred and 86 civilians killed.”

Published on October 30, 2017

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