Rahul Gandhi says Modi destroyed economy with 'torpedoes' of GST, note ban; Congress VP draws up plans for 'Black Day' protests
Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi on Monday chaired a meeting of party general secretaries to chalk out plans for the first note ban anniversary
Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi chaired two meetings with party general secretaries on Monday to chalk out plans on how to mark the first anniversary of demonetisation on 8 November. The party, with allies, is planing to observe 'Black Day' across the country.
Flaying the Narendra Modi-led central government on the issue, the Gandhi scion said that the prime minister had destroyed the country's economy with two "torpedoes" — note ban and GST.
Modi had announced on 8 November last year that currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 denominations will be be scrapped, while GST was implemented on 1 July this year.
Top Congress leaders attended the meeting convened at party headquarters on Monday.
Speaking to the press after the meeting, Rahul slammed Modi for poor implementation of demonetisation and Goods and Services Tax (GST).
Wondering why the government was "celebrating" the first anniversary of note ban, Rahul said, "I don't
know what is there to celebrate." "It is a day of sadness," he added.
Rahul said while the economy was able to withstand the "torpedo" of note ban, it could not withstand the one of GST. The economy, he said, "was in tatters now".
"The prime minster is not able to understand the feeling of the people and the hurt and sadness these two decisions have caused," he told reporters
Elaborating about the series of meetings held, Rahul said, "In the first meeting on demonetisation, we discussed how the move has destroyed small businesses and caused them severe losses. In the second one on GST, we spoke about how good ideas can be destroyed."
The Congress leader said the GST is a "good idea" which has been "destroyed" by the Modi government. Criticising Modi, Rahul said, "Our prime minister doesn't understand the pain he caused the nation."
Before the meeting, according to an India Today report, a senior Congress leader said, "We will protest from block level to national level on all platforms — streets to social media — on the first anniversary of demonetisation on 8 November. The central theme will be MMD (Modi-made disaster), and other Opposition parties are also planning their protests across this central idea."
The Congress and allies have declared their intention of using MMD as the central point of their protests.
While the first meeting discussed the plans of the party, along with other opposition parties, to observe 8 November as 'black day', the second deliberated upon GST implementation. The second meet was attended by former prime minister Manmohan Singh and ex-finance minister P Chidambaram.
Asserting that Modi had failed to acknowledge the result of the decision, Rahul had earlier said, "All cash is not black and all black is not cash. Without understanding this basic concept, the government unleashed terror over the citizens of India. Millions lost their jobs and livelihoods. To do that, you need someone with a very big chest but a small heart."
Rashtriya Janata Dal chief (RJD) Lalu Prasad Yadav had also said on Monday that his party would hold rallies across Bihar, to highlight the alleged failures of the step taken by the Narendra Modi government at the Centre.
With inputs from agencies
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