The Congress on Saturday asked why the Rs 2,000 note was introduced at all after the demonetisation, commenting a day after the RBI announced the high-denomination currency’s withdrawal, and said an independent probe alone would reveal the truth about the note-bandi and the Rs 2,000 fiasco.
The party, which had from the outset described the demonetisation as India’s “biggest scam” and asked how replacing the Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes with Rs 2,000 notes would make hoarding black money harder, on Saturday called the November 2016 note withdrawal a “monumental disaster”.
“You (Prime Minister Narendra Modi) inflicted a deep wound on the economy by doing note-bandi. That destroyed the unorganised sector, crippled MSMEs and wiped out crores of jobs,” Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge tweeted, after questioning the post-demonetisation introduction of the Rs 2,000 note while speaking in Bangalore.
“Now you have resorted to a second note-bandi by scrapping the Rs 2,000 note…. Have you done this to correct your earlier mistake? Only an independent investigation will bring out the truth.”
Congress communications chief Jairam Ramesh tweeted: “Typical of our self-styled Vishwaguru. First Act, Second Think (FAST). 2000 rupee notes introduced with such fanfare after that singularly disastrous Tughlaqi firman of November 8, 2016, are now being withdrawn.”
Party media department head Pawan Khera said: “The ghost of November 8, 2016, has come back to haunt the nation once again. The greatly propagated move of demonetisation continues to be a monumental disaster for this nation.
“The Prime Minister sermoned (sic) the nation on the benefits of the new 2000 notes, today when the printing is stopped what happened to all those promises? The government must explain its motive for such a step.
“The government continues its anti-people and anti-poor agenda. Hope the media questions the government on such a drastic measure and not attribute it to ‘chip shortage’ in the world.”
This was a dig at some TV anchors’ astounding claim, made after the demonetisation, that the Rs 2,000 note bore an electronic chip capable of sending signals to the government if it was illegally stashed somewhere.
On Friday, too, a section of the media had lauded the government for deciding to scrap the Rs 2,000 note, saying itwas helping the corrupthoard black money. Yet, almost every economist and Opposition politician had said the same thing in 2016 when the high-denomination note was introduced.
Congress social media head Supriya Shrinate on Saturday asked the media to worry about its credibility.
“You can hail both the introduction of the Rs 2,000 note and its withdrawal as a masterstroke. Both can’t be true,” Shrinate said.
She said the demonetisation had not achieved any of the objectives that the government had cited to justify the measure.