‘Govt’s mismanagement’: Sonia Gandhi keeps up attack over China face-off, Covid-19

Hindustan Times, New Delhi | | Edited by Meenakshi Ray
Jun 23, 2020 12:57 PM IST

Sonia Gandhi also said that the need of the hour is a massive fiscal stimulus, putting money directly in the hands of the poor, protecting and nurturing the MSMEs and stimulating demand.

Congress chief Sonia Gandhi said on Tuesday the economic crisis in India, the coronavirus pandemic and the “full-blown crisis on the borders with China” was “attributable to the mismanagement” of the Centre.

The CWC had met last on April 23.(PTI)
The CWC had met last on April 23.(PTI)

Sonia Gandhi made the remarks during the Congress Working Committee (CWC) meeting, the party’s highest decision-making body, which is meeting on Tuesday to discuss the India-China border standoff, the coronavirus pandemic and fuel price rise among other issues.

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Randeep Singh Surjewala, the party’s spokesperson, tweeted that CWC paid homage to Colonel B Santosh Babu and 19 other soldiers, who were killed by China during the Galwan Valley face-off on June 15. All CWC members rise to observe two minutes silence in their memory, he said.


Surjewala also tweeted comments made by Sonia Gandhi.

“Now, we have a full-blown crisis on the LAC with China... The future is yet to unfold but we hope that mature diplomacy and decisive leadership will guide the government’’s actions in protecting our territorial integrity,” he quoted Sonia Gandhi as saying during the CWC meeting. 

Twenty Indian Army soldiers, including a commanding officer, were killed in the attack by the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) in eastern Ladakh’s Galwan Valley on June 15.

Sonia Gandhi also said that the need of the hour is a massive fiscal stimulus, putting money directly in the hands of the poor, protecting and nurturing the MSMEs and stimulating demand.

“Instead, the government announced a hollow financial package that had a fiscal component of less than 1 per cent of GDP,” she said while slamming the government over the Rs 20 lakh crore financial package.

She also raised the issue of the fuel price, which has been raised for the last 17 days in a row.

Also read | Galwan Valley clash: Chinese commanding officer among several killed along LAC

“The government has added insult to injury by mercilessly raising petrol and diesel prices for 17 consecutive days, at a time when world prices of crude have fallen,” she said.

The Congress leader also lashed out at the government over the mounting cases of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) across the country.

“Despite the assurances of the Prime Minister who centralized all authority in his hands, the pandemic continues to rage. The Centre has passed the buck to the state governments, but given them zero extra finances.”

The CWC had met last on April 23.

It had alleged that the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is seeking to inflame communal divisions even as the entire nation battles” the Covid-19 pandemic.

Gandhi, on her part, had also accused the BJP of spreading the virus of communal prejudice and hatred in the country. The remarks were in an apparent reference to the communal colour given to the lynching incident in Palghar district of Maharashtra.

The CWC had also discussed the issues of migrant workers, farmers, the revival of Micro, Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (MSMEs), empowering of states to devise solutions tailored to their unique situations and challenges and adequate financial package for them to fight the coronavirus disease (Covid-19).

Former prime minister Manmohan Singh also talked about the crises.

“The pandemic is not being tackled with the courage and magnitude and effort needed to tackle the crisis. Another instance is the crisis on the border, which if not tackled firmly, can lead to a serious situation. I also endorse Soniaji’s remarks,” he said.

He had on Monday, in his first reaction over the India-China stand-off, had said a PM must be mindful of the implications of his words on a nation’s strategic interests and that “disinformation” was no substitute for diplomacy or decisive leadership.

The Congress party has been relentless in its attacks on the government with Rahul Gandhi, P Chidambaram and others questioning the current stance of the ruling dispensation.

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