The opposition on the third day of Maharashtra Assembly in Nagpur collectively attacked the BJP for carrying out the demonetisation drive stating that it has affected poor people, farmers and the common man heavily. Former CM Prithviraj Chavan in his speech vehemently opposed the concept of ‘cashless economy.’ He even asked CM Devendra Fadnavis in the House if his party had been using credit cards and cheques all this while during elections.
For the past one month, almost 80-100 crores of Indians are standing in queues for hours to exchange notes due to the demonetisation by PM Modi. We are not going to achieve anything from this act. Had we implemented demonetisation correctly, people would have supported it. Having said this, demonetisation is a good step but if we want to genuinely eradicate black money or stop terrorism, this alone is not sufficient. No country in the world has benefitted from demonetisation so far. Nobody has thought of this step as a thoughtful step. PM Modi had highlighted two salient features of demonetisation when he broke the news of demonetisation. First was corruption and the other was fake currency that is being printed in Pakistan (that in turn funds terrorists). But, the actual reason behind note ban is the upcoming Uttar Pradesh and Punjab elections are the actual reason for the government to introduction of Rs 2000 currency notes. Rs 2000 denomination note would be clearly useful during upcoming Punjab elections. The RBI isn’t ready for the process of demonetisation as it’s too quick. They want two months to print new notes of Rs 500. Modi’s decision of demonetisation was completely political in nature as the code of conduct for Uttar Pradesh and Punjab’s elections would be announced on January 15, 2017. Black money is also created through elections as politicians use a lot of black money. I want CM Devendra Fadnavis to cross his heart and answer if the BJP really didn’t use black money during the recent Vidhan Parishad and Lok Sabha elections. ‘Did they really use credit card and cheques during elections?’ I request the government to immediately stop Rs 2000 denomination note and issue more of Rs 500 notes along with new notes of Rs 200 denominations. Only then we can move towards a cashless India.
Firstly, India’s black money and our unaccounted money are two different things. Black money is like cancer, something with which every country is fighting against. According to the income tax reports ands records, only 6% is the money that is being kept in the form of black money. Majority of the black money is in foreign accounts, for which we know how worried is our PM! We could see his inaction during Lok Sabha. He’s extremely worried, but that’s a different thing that nothing has happened so far! (Laughs). Either this black money is stacked in the form of gold, real estates or shares in benami companies. So, why is only the 6% (which is in the form of currency notes) being targeted and not the black money, which accounts for 94% of the total unaccounted money? It’s good that we are tackling the 6% black money, which is an impediment for our nation’s growth today. But, this is not the crux of the problem that we have to primarily tackle. We should eradicate black money from its roots. Its time we raise our voices against black money and corruption. Did the BJP get back our black money from abroad?
Talking about fake notes, I know for a fact that our intelligence agency RAW has the complete knowledge about the exact place where fake currency notes are being printed in Pakistan. So, we should be doing a ‘surgical strike’ on those locations. Also, our new notes have reached Pakistan but our farmers in India are still struggling to procure them! Did we ever write to Pakistan about the issue that we are facing because of them? The National Crime Record Bureau (NCRB) informed that India too has been printing fake currency notes.
Demonetisation was primarily implemented to curb terrorism and to stop printing of fake currency notes. But PM Modi, in his six speeches on demonetisation so far, has focussed on black money 18 times, and on Pakistan mere six times! Former RBI governor Raghuram Raghav didn’t support demonetisation as he too felt it couldn’t work; as a reason he was asked to leave. He was of the view that denomination notes of 500 shouldn’t be banned. Countries like North Korea, Burmah, etc too tried to implement demonetisation but failed. The government has all the right to implement demonetisation but why solely focus on note ban? Ever since the news of demonetisation broke out, people started buying gold and middlemen too made good money. Middlemen, in the form of commission, were receiving the money that our government should have received. Our CM Devendra Fadnavis and PM Modi are propagating cashless economy, but do we really have good Internet connectivity in rural areas? In fact, even sufficient ATMs don’t exist there.
Also, to make our economy cashless, we have to keep in mind some serious security concerns, as we can’t afford a security breach in any condition. If a cashless economy fails, only PM Modi would be held responsible. The sudden emergence of ‘Paytm’ has also raised many eyebrows, as Alibaba, a Chinese company, has been one of the major gainers in the demonetisation drive. We shouldn’t allow any foreign companies to enter our economy. The decision of demonetising the economy was taken without anybody’s opinion. Still, Indians especially farmers are adjusting by making their ends meet despite facing the brunt, only for the betterment of our country. I request CM Devendra Fadnavis to urge PM Modi to implement the system of ‘open voting’ for MLC and municipal elections. The results might take sometime but it’s going to be fruitful. I would just like to say that demonetisation is a blunder!