Today marks the first anniversary of demonetisation, a step that Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said 'will be remembered as a watershed moment in India's economic history'. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has termed the demonetisation - a historic and multi-dimensional success. The BJP is celebrating November 8 as 'Anti-Black Money Day'. However, this celebration move has not gone well with the country's grand old party Congress as party Vice-President Rahul Gandhi termed the note ban move a 'tragedy' that wreaked havoc on Indian economy. The Congress will observe this day as 'Black Day'.
Rahul Gandhi will participate in a candle-light vigil as part of 'Black Day' protest in Surat, Gujarat. Reports suggest that the Congress vice president will have informal meetings with the industry representatives and workers during the day.
Speaking on one year anniversary of demonetisation, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman today said: "Biggest achievement is that terrorism has been badly hit & the stone pelters which were in thousands have reduced because their cash flow has been cut."
Earlier this week, Congress National spokesperson Randip Singh Surjewala in a press conference said that millions of people in informal sector lost their jobs due to demonetisation. "Small traders were wiped out, factories were shut. How can the BJP celebrate such day?" Surjewala had asked. Congress is not alone to protest the BJP's Anti-Black Money Day celebration. Regional parties such as TMC, AAP, BSP and Swaraj Abhiyan have hit out at the Central government for the demonetisation move. Arvind Kejriwal led-Aam Aadmi Party observing November 8 as Dhokha Diwas (Cheating Day). Swaraj Abhiyan founder Yogendra Yadav on Tuesday said that the government's celebration on the first anniversary of demonetisation was a "cruel joke".
Prime Minister Modi in a series of tweets listed out the achievements of demonetisation. He said that 125 crore Indians fought a decisive battle against black money and corruption and Won. "I bow to the people of India for steadfastly supporting the several measures taken by the Government to eradicate corruption and black money," the Prime Minister said this in a tweet.
- Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) November 8, 2017
The Prime Minister has also asked people to share feedback on demonetisation directly on NM App. PM Modi has also released a 7-minute video to show note ban benefits.
- Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) November 8, 2017Here's how politicians have reacted ahead of the first anniversary of the demonetisation:
What is the Modi govt celebrating? A demonetisation disaster which brought the economy to a halt. Everything that we warned about demonetisation has come true; the most cruel attack on the vast majority of Indians, opening most vicious doors for corruption and crony capitalism. Dead people in queues exemplify the misery. Job losses, lives and livelihoods destroyed as the poorest of the poor were hit by Jumlanomics which took 86% of the cash out in a midnight Tughlaqi firman.
Young India needs new jobs. Govt has ensured people lost jobs. Minister says only people without skills lost out. He may like to see this👇🏾 pic.twitter.com/3FyWEbDXyJ- Sitaram Yechury (@SitaramYechury) November 8, 2017
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee earlier this week had announced that she would change the picture of her Twitter account to black on November 8 and today she changed it to black. Banerjee in a Facebook post said: "Demonetisation is a big scam. I repeat, demonetisation is a big scam. If thorough investigation is conducted, this will be proved. Demonetisation was not to combat black money. It was only to convert black money into white money for vested interests of political party in power. Black money became 'white fund' for them and the country was plunged into darkness."