Monday, 30th October 2017

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What about jobs, Congress asks after President's address

Sharma objected to the inclusion of the 'one-nation-one-poll' plan in the presidential address without evolving a consensus

  • Published 21.06.19, 7:47 AM
  • Updated 21.06.19, 7:47 AM
  • 2 mins read
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Party’s communications chief Randeep Surjewala said the BJP government had raised high hopes with big promises but delivered little. Telegraph file photo

The Congress on Thursday pointed to the Narendra Modi government’s purported failure to deliver on its lofty promises in the previous term while rejecting as “hollow words” the presidential address to the joint sitting of Parliament.

Congress spokesperson Anand Sharma said: “The address was a mere repetition of the Prime Minister’s words — full of platitudes and hollow promises. The greatest problem the country is facing is not mentioned. It is unemployment. The government should have rolled out a plan to create jobs over the next five years.”

The presidential address is drafted by the government and lays down its policy priorities and plans.

Arguing that the nation had seen how serious the government was in solving the real problems of the people in the last five years, Sharma said: “We can’t take the promises seriously. They say farmers’ income will be doubled by 2022. Agriculture is growing at the rate of 2.5 to 2.9 per cent. At this rate, we will require 45 years to double farmers’ income.”

Sharma added: “The economy is growing at less than 7 per cent and the threat of recession is looming. They have promised to make India a $5-trillion economy. India will need a growth in double digits, apart from reviving investments and manufacturing, restoring banks’ health and controlling NPAs (non-performing assets) to achieve that target.”

The Congress leader objected to the inclusion of the “one-nation-one-poll” plan in the presidential address without evolving a consensus. He also dismissed as hollow the objective of winning everybody’s trust on the plan to hold simultaneous Lok Sabha and Assembly elections as the BJP was allegedly engineering defections in all Opposition parties and trying to destabilise states ruled by its rivals.

The Congress’s leader in the Lok Sabha, Adhir Chowdhury, said the bogey of the one-nation-one-poll was being raised only to divert the people’s attention as the government had failed on all counts.

Party’s communications chief Randeep Surjewala said the BJP government had raised high hopes with big promises but delivered little.

“The presidential address is the prime example of a lot of intent founded upon sheer inaction. National security is in peril. Seventy-four jawans have been martyred in Jammu and Kashmir in 2019 alone. Ten jawans have sacrificed their lives in the past one week. The home ministry and the intelligence agencies have failed to prevent Anantnag- and Pulwama-like terror attacks,” he said.

Surjewala pointed to the severe water crisis, recalling that the Niti Aayog had said that 40 per cent Indians will have no access to drinking water by 2030 and 21 cities will run out of ground water.

“The new education policy is pending for five years. The average spending on education has been a pittance. Around 70 per cent of projects under Namami Ganga are unfinished and 80 per cent of the funds lie unspent,” he added.