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Cong workers stage protests against note ban; will probe if party comes to power, says Surjewala

Press Trust of India  |  Bhopal/New Delhi 

cadres Friday staged protests against demonetisation in several states a day after the second anniversary of the note ban with one senior calling it a "Modi-made disaster" that will be probed if the party comes to power at the Centre in 2019.

The protests were staged near the offices of the Reserve Bank of India(RBI) in and the state capitals.

With no let up in the war of words between the government and the opposition over the ban of high-value notes announced by on November 8, 2016, the and also joined the in dubbing the exercise a "failure".

Leaders of the SP and BSP demanded an apology from the for the hardship caused to the poor. "Demonetisation broke the back of the poor," they said.

Thursday staunchly defended the demonetisation drive, saying 'prophets of doom' have been proven wrong as hard data of two years showed an increase in tax base, greater formalisation of the economy and retaining the fastest growing economy tag for the fifth year in a row.

The BJP also posed 10 questions to the Congress, asking why it finds merit in protesting every "anti-corruption" measure of the

Senior dubbed demonetisation as the "biggest scam of independent India" and claimed it had pushed the country towards economic disaster.

"The PM and BJP had claimed demonetisation was taken to eradicate black money and fake currency. None of the objectives of demonetisation, like eradication of black money and fake currency in circulation or breaking the backbone of Naxalism and terror activities, have been achieved," he told a conference in Bhopal,

"Demonetisation is a Modi-made disaster," he said.

Surjewala said demonetisation and all other scams of the present government would be inquired into if the Congress was elected to power.

Surjewala earlier tweeted that demonetisation was a "scam" to convert black money to white and asked the BJP to declare who is responsible for the "economic loss" caused by the move.

Youth Congress members accompanied by senior party leaders were detained by police after they staged a protest against demonetisation outside the RBI office in

"Around 70-80 Congress protesters, including Ashok Gehlot, and have been detained," police said. The protesters were later released.

Congress activists led by and protested near the in Chandigarh.

They raised slogans against the Centre describing the exercise as an "anti-people" decision.

"People are still awaiting an answer that except ruining business and increasing unemployment, what benefit has it given? If the government considers it a success, it should tell (people) in whose pocket the benefit went," said in

BSP supremo Mayawati claimed that none of the objectives of demonetisation have been met.

"The BJP should offer an apology for the move. The BJP government at the Centre will be remembered as a government of failures in which none of the promises made to the people were fulfilled," she said in a statement.

Mayawati said resentment was brewing among the people as the BJP, which promised to bring back black money and ensure "acche din" (good days), stood exposed.

Sambit Patra, meanwhile, hit back at Rahul over his criticism of demonetisation, saying a war is going on in Indian with the Modi-led government working to curb black money while the Congress was allegedly trying to save it.

Demonetisation destroyed the "ill-gotten wealth of the four generations of the family", Patra alleged at a conference in Delhi, claiming that the move led to many benefits, including increase in tax base, curbing black money and hitting Naxalism.

In his criticism, the Congress had said that demonetisation was a planned "brutal conspiracy" and a "shrewd scheme" to convert the black money of Modi's "suited-booted friends".

In a fresh tweet, took a swipe at the over demonetisation, accusing him of conning people after promising to generate jobs and bring back black money, but helping his "suited-booted" friends instead.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, November 09 2018. 18:30 IST
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