The Congress on Monday termed the BJP's 'Sankalp Patra' as 'jhansa patra' (a deluded manifesto), and said the document failed to mention demonetisation, the Prime Minister Narendra Modi's much-debatable decision to replace high value currency notes with new ones, which was supposed to end the flow of black money.
Slamming the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)'s Lok Sabha manifesto for upcoming polls, the Congress' chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said what was missing from the document was any mention of jobs, notebandi (demonetisation), GST and black money.
Demonetisation of high-value currency notes -- Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes - was a step taken by PM Modi to bring back money that was out of the banking system.
Addressing media in New Delhi, top Congress leaders including Ahmed Patel and Randeep Singh Surjewala highlighted some of the BJP manifesto's flaws. During the media interaction, the Congress leaders later released document called '125 broken promises of BJP', listing the many tall promises the party made in the 2014 election manifesto.
It is worth notables that BJP has not listed demonetisation as achievement in its 2019 election manifesto. In the past, the BJP had described the note ban as a key step in a chain of important decisions taken by the government to formalize the economy.
One of the key poll promises of Narendra Modi-led BJP in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections was bringing back the black money. Before he became Prime Minister, Modi vowed to bring all illicit money stashed away in foreign countries, and promised that poor people in the country would get Rs 15 lakh each.
In the President's note, Amit Shah mentioned demonetisation only once as one of the historic achievements of our government. "In its tenure of five years, the government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been able to take many decisions which are historic and has ushered in a comprehensive and fundamental transformation," BJP President Amit Shah said.
Highlighting the work done by Narendra Modi-led NDA government in the last five years, he said, "Swachh Bharat Mission, Ujjawala Yojana, Saubhagya Yojana, Demonetisation, GST, Surgical Strikes, Air Strikes, total electrification, provision for housing for 2.5 crore families, health insurance under Ayushman Bharat for more than 50 crore people and disbursement of loans to more than 14 crore people under MUDRA Yojana are some of the historic achievements of our government."
Last week, Indian Express had reported that India's tax department recorded a huge surge in the number of "stop filers" in the financial year in which Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced demonetisation. According to the report, the number of stop filers spiked over 10-fold to 88.04 lakh from 8.56 lakh in 2015-16. The report mentioned that this number does not include taxpayers who have passed away or whose PAN cards have been cancelled or surrendered in that year.
The total value of invalidated Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes at the time of demonetisation was Rs 15.44 lakh crore, out of which only Rs 16,000 crore was not returned to the RBI. As per the final numbers disclosed by the RBI in August 2018, Rs 15.31 lakh crore returned to the banking regulator which was far higher than the government expectation of recovering only Rs 10 lakh crore.
Edited by Chitranjan Kumar