Demonetisation anniversary: Jobs, lives lost due to note ban, says P. Chidambaram
New Delhi: Launching a scathing attack on the Modi government on the note ban anniversary, senior Congress leader P. Chidambaram on Wednesday said millions of people “suffered” and no one can deny that lives and jobs were lost due to demonetisation.
A year after the demonetisation decision, the former Union finance minister said on this “black day, people should read real-life stories and say a prayer for the “millions who suffered”.
“Can any one deny lives were lost, small businesses closed and jobs were lost?,” he said in a series of tweets.
Chidambaram claimed cash with the public is Rs15 trillion and it is increasing and will soon reach the November 2016 level of Rs17 trillion. He said how much cash (money supply) there should be, is a decision of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), not the government.
Chidambaram claimed that artificial reduction of cash in circulation is one of the reasons for lower demand and lower growth.
“In interest of transparency, government/RBI should release RBI Board’s agenda, background note and (former governor) Dr Raghuram Rajan’s note. If government is confident of its decision, why does it fear releasing these documents?” he asked.
Exactly a year ago, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced demonetisation of Rs1,000 and Rs500 notes as a measure to fight black money, corruption, fake currency and terror funding.
The opposition is observing “black day” today. Chidambaram said the government has claimed that black money has been eliminated but when the Gujarat election campaign will start “you will find the ‘eliminated’ black money”.
“Modi’s currency gamble damaged Indian economy, says the BBC. Is BBC a supporter of black money and corruption?,” he asked.