Modi targets opposition for stalling parliament, shielding corrupt

Kanpur, Dec 19 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday attacked the opposition parties for stalling Parliament and accused them of running away from a debate on demonetisation to “safeguard the corrupt”.

Addressing his sixth Parivartan rally in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh, he said the government was using technology to track black money hoarders and and invoked late Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi to attack the Congress for opposing demonetisation.

“They didn’t allow Parliament to function as they were not ready to debate demonetisation,” said Modi, days after almost the entire Winter Session of Parliament was virtually washed out with opposition protests over his presence during the debate on the government’s November 8 decision of scrapping Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes to curb black money, corruption and terror funding.

“Even after the President (Pranab Mukherjee) urged them not to disrupt Parliament, they did not relent and continued disruption only because they were afraid of confronting the government. They did so to avoid debate over demonetisation,” he claimed.

Lashing out at the opposition leaders, Modi said: “They even threw torn papers at the Speaker to halt Parliament proceedings.

“Even municipality members think 50 times before behaving like that.”

Accusing the opposition of dishonoring parliament, he claimed that the country was divided into two halves — one of those who are “warring against corruption and black money” and the other of a “handful who are shielding the corrupt”.

Continuing to target the Congress, Modi accused it of “ruining the country” for the sake of its political interest.

“They are accusing us but I want to remind the Congress about its past, want to remind about Sitaram Kesri.

“When Kesri was the (Congress) treasurer, people used to say ‘na khata na bahi, jo Kesri kahe wohi sahi (no books, no accounts, whatever Kesri says is the accounts)’,” he said referring to Kesri’s stint as the Congress treasurer during the 1980s.

Encouraging people to go for cashless transactions, Modi ridiculed the Congress for its opposition.

“On the one hand, the Congress says the poor don’t have bank accounts and, on the other, it says the poor are not getting money despite queuing up in banks. Let them first decide if the poor have bank accounts.

“Congress used to hail Rajiv Gandhi for taking India to the era of computers, ushering in mobile phones. But now when we are advocating using mobile phones for banking, the Congress says poor have no mobiles. How long will they continue to lie and mislead people,” he said.

He accused UP’s ruling Samajwadi Party and the Mayawati-led Bahujan Samaj Party of shielding and encouraging criminals and called upon the people to bring the Bharataiya Janata Party to power in the state.

Modi also reiterated that hardships due to demonetisation will start easing after 50 days of the implementation of the currency spike move.

“One decision (demonetisation) has ended the game for many big players.

“When there was Rs 1,000 notes, nobody cared for Rs 100 note. But now that Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 are gone, the power of Rs 100 has increased and so has the power of the poor,” he said.

“I know about all the hardships that you have been facing. Despite the opposition’s provocations and misleading you, you have chosen to stand by this decision for the sake of the country… for the sake of honesty. Let me assure you, your hardships will not go in vain, we will win this war against corruption and black money,” he asserted.

During the day, he also unveiled several government schemes and projects, including a gas pipeline and a power sub-station.

–IANS

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