The Delhi government on Tuesday sought President Pranab Mukherjee’s intervention, urging him to direct the Centre to immediately withdraw the ‘draconian’ scheme to scrap Rs 500 and 1,000 notes.
A resolution was adopted by the Delhi assembly that requested the President to institute a court-monitored probe to look into the allegations that the “demonetisation scheme is a fraud on the nation”.
A one-day session of the assembly was called by the government on Tuesday to discuss the fallout of the decision to scrap high-value currency notes, beginning November 8 midnight. The session lasted for about two-and-half-hours with a single business on its agenda of adopting the resolution moved by chief minister Arvind Kejriwal.
The development comes on a day the Centre announced more measures to improve cash flow, including marking people’s fingers with indelible ink to manage crowds outside banks. The queue outside banks and ATMs swelled on Tuesday, a day after the banks opened after a holiday.
Replying to the discussion on the resolution, Kejriwal claimed the scheme was a war against the country’s poor and not against black money, as claimed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
“Common men are lectured about patriotism. The question is whether people’s money in banks is safe? They take money from the rich and force people to queue up outside banks. In the name of strong tea, you have fed them poison. You are the PM of black money holders and the rich but enemy of the poor,” Kejriwal said.
The AAP national convenor said while the common people are facing hardships in depositing and withdrawing their own money, the rich and friends of the Prime Minister were having no hassles at all in exchanging their currency.
“The PM is not acting against people named in the Panama List as many of them are his friends…Centre waived Rs 1.14 lakh crore loan of industrialists, but common people are being threatened (of action) if they deposit more than Rs 2.5 lakh in their account,” Kejriwal said.
The resolution deplored “the Prime Minister for punishing the common people of India instead of fulfilling his promise of bringing back black money lodged in foreign banks”, besides condoling “the loss of lives of honest Indians while struggling for hours together in unending queues to get back just a few hundred rupees of their own hard earned money through banks and ATMs”.
Soon after the resolution was tabled in the assembly, leader of opposition Vijender Gupta opposed the move arguing that the resolution contained ‘objectionable’ words. The objection was, however, overruled by speaker Ram Niwas Goel. Earlier, Gupta has also objected to Manish Sisodia’s statement that “25 people had died countrywide due to the crisis precipitated by the demonetization scheme”.
Gupta was later marshaled out of the House as he continued to raise hi objections repeatedly as the chief minister delivered his speech. The chief minister delivered most part of his speech in absence of the opposition MLAs, as the other BJP legislator walked out after Gupta’s exit.