Escalating his attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Rahul Gandhi on Saturday termed the demonetisation of high-value currency notes a “Modi-made disaster”. Gandhi said the PM had attacked the economic system of the country to benefit the one per cent “super rich.”
“For the first time in the history of India, Prime Minister has attacked the poor people of this country. Usually the Prime Minister works for the country. They work for the economy, but Narendra Modi has attacked our economic system,” Gandhi alleged at a Congress rally in north Karnataka’s Belagavi.
“As it is said a man-made disaster, in the same way demonetization is Modi-made disaster,” the Congress vice-president said as he targeted the Prime Minister squarely blaming him for the hardships post-demonetisation.
More than 100 people have died, he claimed, adding, “Fidel Castro (Cuban revolutionary) was remembered in Parliament and we stood in silence for two minutes as a mark of respect to him, but BJP leaders did not have two minutes time for these hundred people.”
“Who is responsible for their deaths? Narendra Modi is responsible....In the last two and half years Narendra Modi government has been attacking the poor,” he said.
Accusing the Modi government of trying to divide India, he said on the one side, there were one per cent super rich who have private aircraft, flashy vehicles and big businesses and on the other, there were 99% of people who are honest like farmers, labourers, small traders and middle-class who toil every day for the sake of the country and their lives.
“In the last two and half years, one per cent super rich in this country have amassed 70% of India’s wealth and if you look deep into this one per cent, only 50 families have major portion of India’s wealth.”
“You know their names; these are the people who travel with Narendra Modi to America, Japan, and Australia,” Gandhi said.
“Congress wants to get rid of corruption from India and whatever step the BJP government takes whether it is big or small if it is against corruption we will give it full support,” he said.
Asserting that demonetisation was not against the rich but against the poor, middle class, farmers, labourers and small traders, Gandhi said “all black money is not cash, and all cash is not black money.”
“Who has black money, it is with those 50 families, and it is with one per cent super rich in this country..,” he said.
“...All the black money is not in cash, India’s thieves are clever, and as soon as they get money they invest it in land, real estate, gold or in foreign bank accounts like Swiss bank.”
According to government figures, he said 6% of black money is in cash, 94% in real estate, big buildings and in foreign bank accounts.
Claiming that the Swiss government had given a list of Swiss bank account holders’ names to Indian government, he said the Congress had been asking the government to table the names of “these thieves” in the Parliament for the last two and half years.”Why is it not being tabled? Why is Modi protecting them?”
“Why are Lalit Modi and Vijay Mallya sitting in London? Why are they not in India? Why didn’t you get them back?
“Vijay Mallya is India’s thief. After demonetization why did you waive Rs 1200 crore loan of this man? Answer me why did you feed him a toffee of Rs 1200 crore?”
Gandhi said Modi knows that most part of black money is in Swiss bank, real estate and in huge buildings, “but I don’t know for what reason instead of going after 94% black money, he is after the 6%. Instead of going after one per cent super rich he is behind 99%.”
“He is not after thieves, but behind poor farmers, labourers,” Gandhi said.