Congress eyes to cash in on cash crunch in poll-bound Uttarakhand

Congress believes the hardships people are facing after demonetisation can be a potent weapon against a resurgent BJP in the hill state

dehradun Updated: Jan 05, 2017 17:02 IST
Anupam Trivedi
Anupam Trivedi
Hindustan Times
Uttarakhand news,Congress,BJP
Uttarakhand chief minister Harish Rawat addresses a Congress rally against demonetisation at Rajiv Bhawan in Dehradun. (Vinay Santosh Kumar/HT File Photo)

The beleaguered ruling Congress in Uttarakhand is all set to make sufferings of the people in the aftermath of scrapping of high-value banknotes a major poll plank in the assembly elections, due early next year.

The Congress, which is facing anti-incumbency and corruption charges, believes the hardships people are facing after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s shock announcement to recall Rs 500 and Rs 1000 banknotes can be a potent weapon against a resurgent BJP in the hill state.

The party was initially reluctant to criticise the move. But as five weeks after the November 8 announcement people are still reeling under acute cash crunch, the party decided to cash in on the situation.

State Congress president Kishore Upadhyay said the denometisation considerably dented Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) prospects as it is silent on the difficulties faced by the people.

“We will highlight the sufferings of the people owing to demonetisation and its impact on the economy. Last time when the then USSR experimented with the demonetisation, it ended up breaking the soviet republic,” Upadhyay said on Friday.

He said his party will raise the issue in its second phase of yatra’s to be started from Dec 19.

Last week chief minister Harish Rawat in a surprise move announced a probe into all property deals above Rs 50 lakhs that were made after Nov 8 midnight. He also ordered a probe into alleged purchase of huge quantity of gold by a BJP MLA in the state after the demonetization.

The BJP which has trained guns on the Harish Rawat government, primarily on corruption issue, said the hardship is temporary, but the state will benefit from it in the long run as it will weed out corruption.

“Corruption is a major issue in Uttarakhand and people have faced it everywhere. Demonetisation will definitely go in our favour. After all people don’t want a corrupt Rawat government,” state BJP president Ajay Bhatt said.

But many BJP leaders feel the issue could damage their prospect if not handled properly. The party has asked its youth wing to propagate among masses the positive sides of the demonetisation.


First Published: Dec 16, 2016 21:48 IST