New Delhi, November 28
The government today slammed opposition parties for their call of Bharat Bandh or organising protest in the name of ‘Akrosh Diwas’ against the demonetisation move even as the latent division in the opposition rank on the united strategy to corner the NDA dispensation came to the fore. “Why this Akrosh Diwas? Why such protest? This protest is not for the people but seemed to be against the 125 crore people of India. This protest is against the general sentiment of the country which has backed Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s actions against black money,” Minister of State in Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) Jitendra Singh told reporters.
Endorsing him and speaking on the same line, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar said, “Opposition members should debate all issues in both the Houses of the parliament. We are ready for debate in both the Houses. Why are they running away?”
“Kale dhan ke khilaf aakrosh hona chahiye (The Akrosh (anguish) should be against the black money,” he said, adding, however “it is regrettable that opposition parties are thinking otherwise”. Another minister, Arjun Ram Meghawal (Mos Finance) said the opposition parties were “divided” and they should first reconcile among themselves. “The opposition parties are divided even as people are overwhelmingly supporting the government move,” he said.
Meanwhile, the latent division in the opposition rank came to the fore after about a fortnight of rare unity among the opposition parties including the Congress, the Left parties and the Trinamool Congress came over the demonetisation move of the government enforced since mid-night of November 8.
But on a day, a few opposition parties gave a call for protest or a Bharat Bandh in the name of Akrosh Diwas, Leader of the Opposition in Rajya Sabha and senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad said, “We (Congress party) have not taken any call on or for a Bharat Bandh”.
He, however, criticised the ruling BJP and said, “The maximum amount of black money is with the BJP. Before criticising other parties, they should introspect first”
Some of the opposition parties also met here today and decided to press for Prime Minister’s apology for his remarks outside Parliament that opposition parties were supporting the black money by ventilating their opposition to the currency ban, sources said.
While the Left parties, including the CPI(M) and CPI, have called a 12-hour bandh to protest against ban on old high-value currency notes, Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress has said it is not in favour of any bandh.
Bahujan Samaj Party supremo Mayawati said her party is not part of any Bharat Bandh and her party is against black money. However, she flayed the government for not implementing the demonetisation scheme effectively resulting in inconveniences for the people.
Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti supported the demonetisation move.
New Delhi, November 28