Congress leaders Mallikarjun Kharge and Jyotiraditya Scindia led the opposition attack on the BJP-led NDA government in the Lok Sabha on Monday, saying Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s demonetisation move had resulted in massive job losses and did little to meet its declared objectives of abolishing black money and terror funding.
While Kharge demanded an apology from the Prime Minister, who was present in the House, for the note ban decision which caused “125 deaths and lot of troubles” to the people, Scindia hit out at the government over the issues of foreign policy, internal security, one-rank-one pension, MNREGA, demonetisation and farmers’ suicides.
“First this government tried to teach us what to wear and what to speak and now they are telling us how to spend our own money,” Scindia said attacking the note ban move.
Scindia said the government’s foreign policy has been “reduced to mere photo op” given that it failed to get the membership of the Nuclear Suppliers Group, and was also unsuccessful in ensuring the mention of terror outfits such as Jaish-e-Mohammad and Lashkar-e-Toiba in the Goa declaration of the last year’s Brics summit.
Scindia, who is the Congress party’s chief whip in the Lok Sabha, claimed that the highest number of ceasefire violations was witnessed in 2016 and these increased after the September 29 surgical strikes along the Line of Control (LoC).
He also lashed out at the Prime Minister’s speech at Meerut on Saturday where he is said to have referred to Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) as Pakistan’s territory.
During his 100-minute speech, Kharge took repeated digs at the Prime Minister and the government, resulting in regular sparring between the BJP and Congress members. “You can fool all the people some of the time and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time,” he said, quoting Abraham Lincoln. He claimed that the economists across the world had termed the note ban move as bad.
When some BJP members said former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi had imposed emergency in the country, Congress president Sonia Gandhi was quick to react. “We have an emergency even today,” she said. Kharge added: “At that time, it was a declared emergency. Under you there is an undeclared emergency.”