New Delhi, December 18
After protesting in Parliament on the issue of demoentisaiton, the Congress, in an effort to up the ante against the Narendra Modi Government on the issue, plans to rake up the issue in public meetings across the country, as part of the party’s campaign for Assembly polls in the state of Uttar Pradesh, Goa and Gujarat.
After launching a no-holds-barred attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi on demonetisation over the past few days, Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi will hold public rallies across the country to ‘reflect the pain and anguish of the people,’ due to the decision.
”Congress MPs, leaders, including its Vice-President Rahul Gandhi, will be reflecting the pain caused to people due to demonetisation and persuade and force Government to ensure that situation returns to normal. In days to come, Mr Gandhi will travel across the country, reflecting the pain and anguish of the people,” AICC Media In-charge Randeep surjewala said. In a sharp attack on Mr Modi, Mr Gandhi has claimed that he has information on “personal corruption” of the Prime Minister that would “explode his balloon” .
He alleged that he was not being allowed to speak in parliament.
Mr Surjewala said that Mr Gandhi has been meeting people across the country since the announcement of the decision to understand their pain.
”Rahul Gandhi is travelling to various sections, meeting with people. He just went to UP to meet farmers,” Surjewala said.
In fact, the Congress Vice-President kickstarted the party’s Goa poll campaign on Friday evening with a scathing attack on BJP government at the Centre, on the issue of demonetisation.
Attacking the Modi government on demonetisation, Mr Gandhi said the decision to demonetise high value notes of denomination Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 has impacted only the poor and the middle-class, while the rich get away. “If BJP takes honest and genuine steps to eliminate corruption, Congress will 100 per cent stand behind them. But they haven’t done that. The demonetisation drive is waging a war against India’s people and its economy,” Mr Gandhi said.
“All cash is not black money and all black money is not cash. Most of the black money is stashed away in Swiss bank accounts. It’s actually the poor people, who have no choice, but to use cash. By telling them one fine day that the money they have earned through hard work is just a piece of paper, Modi has delivered a big blow to the poor,” he said.
Addressing another rally in Karnataka yesterday, Rahul termed demonetisation as a ‘Modi-made’ disaster.
”All black money is not cash; all cash is not black money. Instead of targeting one per cent of the people who owned 85 per cent of wealth, the government went after 99 per cent of the population,” Mr Gandhi said and alleged that money has been snatched from the pockets of the poor to help the wealthiest 50 families in the country.
Mr Gandhi is also scheduled to hold a rally in Himachal Pradesh on December 23-24.
Though the rally by Congress is being held to highlight its achievements in four years in the state, the party Vice-President is expected to raise the issue of demonetisation .
Congress plans to hold public rallies across the country on demonetisation, as part of its efforts to intensify its attack on NDA Government on the issue.
Sources said Rahul will address a rally in Jaunpur in UP on December 19, Mehsana in Gujarat on December 21, and Dehradun in Uttarakhand on December 23.
Mr Gandhi may address another rally in Bahraich, also in east UP.
While UP, Goa and Uttarakhand will have Assembly elections early next year, Gujarat will go to polls in the second half of 2017.
Sources said that during the rallies, Rahul will highlight how the implementation of demonetisation decision by the Modi Government has been a been a mess, putting millions of poor into discomfort and resulting in over 100 deaths.
In his attack on Government on the issue, Mr Gandhi has alleged that large sums of money deposited in banks after announcement of demonetisation will be used by PM to cover up the Non-Performing Assets of banks, caused by unrecovered loans to a few corporate.
Sources said that in a recent meeting held by Mr Gandhi earlier in the week, party MPs and state Congress units have been asked to step up protests over demonetisation over the coming days.
Congress workers will hit the street in various parts of the country in the coming weeks against the demonetisation that led to harassment of common people.
Congress has said that while it supports any effort to tackle the black money, demonetisation has caused hardships to the common man, farmers and small businessmen, making them stand in huge queues to withdraw cash for their requirements.
The party raised uproar during the recently-concluded Monsoon session of Parliament, demanding a statement from Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his presence during a debate on the issue in both the Houses.
New Delhi, December 18