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Jaitley defends demonetisation move, says excessive cash boosts parallel economy

Finance minister Arun Jaitley said demonetisation was just a part of the several initiatives taken by government to weed out black money.

black money crackdown Updated: Feb 09, 2017 18:14 IST
Mahua Venkatesh
Mahua Venkatesh
Hindustan Times, New Delhi 
Demonetisation,Blackmoney,Arun Jaitley
Union finance minister Arun Jaitley addresses press conference in New Delhi.(Sanjeev Verma/HT Photo)

Defending the demonetisation move and listing out several measures undertaken by the NDA government to fight corruption and black money circulation, finance minister Arun Jaitley said the usage of cash only boosts parallel economy and thus it must be curbed.

He said demonetisation was just a part of the several initiatives taken by the government to weed out black money. The fight against corruption and black money should not be seen as a political fight, Jaitley said, adding that the demonetisation move was primarily aimed at weeding out the ills of society.

“It is no credit to any economy that you deal in cash… cash has a lot of vices,” he said in the Rajya Sabha, just before PM Narendra Modi’s address in the Upper House. Jaitley said most other countries are “less-cash” economies and people must be encouraged to adopt technology and move towards a digital economy.

Taking a dig at Congress leader Anand Sharma, who said the government was not throwing any light on the status of the H1B visa, Jaitley said the leader was blaming the NDA for the policies that the new US government was coming up with. Speaking in the Rajya Sabha, Sharma said the demonetisation exercise had put the common man in utter distress and uncertainty since the Indian economy was largely cash-based.

Just after assuming office, the government set up a Supreme Court monitored special investigation team (SIT) to address the menace of illegal money.

First Published: Feb 09, 2017 07:41 IST