After leaving BJP red-faced by his editorial piece on demonetisation, Yashwant Sinha is blazing all guns on BJP with fresh data. In a fresh attack by former Finance Minister and veteran BJP leader Yashwant Sinha of BJP, Yashwant Sinha said that the move has cost Rs 3.75 lakh crore loss to the nation. Yashwant Sinha linked the termination of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes to the one implemented by Mohammad-Bin-Tughlaq who ruled the Tughlaq dynasty from 1325-1351 AD.
Referring to Tughlaq’a move of replacing gold and silver currency coins with copper and bronze, Sinha said, “In history, a number of emperors, monarchs and kings have conducted demonetisation… About 700 years ago, there was an emperor in this country, who introduced his currency and ended the circulation of the older one. Demonetisation happened 700 years ago. The emperor’s name was Muhammed-Bin-Tuqhlaq. He is infamous in history for shifting the capital of his empire from Delhi to Daulatabad”.
Sinha opened-up in an event organised by “Lokshahi Bachao Abhiyan”, where former Gujarat Chief Minister Suresh Mehta was also present, Sinha said, “Demonetisation was considered so important that the PM decided that he himself will announce it, instead of allowing the RBI Governor or the Finance Minister to do it. While announcing it in an hour-long speech, he mentioned black money 74 or 75 times. Fake currency and terrorism were also mentioned, but nowhere was digital and cashless economy mentioned.”
On shifting goal-post by PM Modi from black money to cashless economy, Sinha said, “Nobody had cash then. The country had already turned cashless,” said Sinha as the audience, largely consisting of senior citizens in Thakorbhai Desai Hall, applauded.
While claiming that the entire process of demonetisation and the dip in economic activity together had caused a loss of Rs 3.75 lakh crore to the nation, Sinha said, “A message is going across the world that India is a nation of thieves; we all are involved in illegal activities; there is nobody honest here”.
“These days, a there is a new tradition. Everything is a media event. Nobody has done anything before us is a remark that has become common. Atal Bihari Vajyapee ruled the nation for six years. If you say, nothing has been done for the last 70 years, then has Vajpayee Ji done anything that was worth taking note of? If that is so, then why was Bharat Ratna given to AB Vajpayee,” Sinha said, adding that the stand is taken that “only I am right, and nobody else is” cannot work.
Taking note from Vajpayee as how he reached to a “consensus” with opposition parties about the United States when the Iraq war broke out, Sinha said, “I learnt a very important lesson from Vajpayeeji. Consensus should be created… Opposition (parties) is not an enemy”.
Taking pot shot as how PM Modi comfortably shifted all the deadlines of promises made before taking the oath of office from 2019 to 2022, he said, “We have to tell the people of this country what all we did in 2019”.
Economy is standing on one leg
Talking about the state of economy, the former finance minister said, “Today the finance minister claims that our economic fundamentals are strong… Our fiscal deficit is under control at around 3 percent, our current account deficit is around 1.25 percent, inflation is under control, stock markets are booming and there is an atmosphere of happiness and peace all around. Now, we also have a certificate from US President (Donald) Trump.” Sinha said all this was due to the low prices of international crude, which fell from $110 per barrel in May 2014 to $29 in the subsequent months after the NDA government took charge in New Delhi.
“This (the fall of crude prices) did not happen because of us. It was not that the lion of Gujarat roared and all the oil exporting countries got scared and decided to lower the prices,” Sinha remarked. He said the government had failed to take advantage of the fallen crude prices and did little to boost domestic economy.
“What we are seeing today is the silence before the storm. Now the prices of crude have increased to $60 per barrel, the stock markets have turned volatile, the rupee has weakened against the US dollar and the feeling of comfort that existed, now seems to be ending…I do not want to be a prophet of doom,” Sinha said, adding that the rise in crude prices could destabilise the economy.
“Today our economy is standing on a single leg,” Sinha said. He said the economy’s lone support was low prices of international crude and nobody could predict how much longer the prices would remain subdued. “Domestic demand and domestic savings will be the guiding principles of Indian economy, not foreign demand and investment,” he added.