Continuing his attack on the government on the issue of Demonetisation, senior Congress leader and former finance minister P Chidambaram on Sunday described it as a 'thoughtless and rash decision that turned out to be a colossal mistake'. No elected government in a Democracy has the right to inflict unbearable hardship and misery upon the people. In one of his works, Hippocrates said, "Do no harm",' Chidambaram said in a series of tweets.
Noting that a year after demonetisation, every justification trotted out for that decision had been rebutted and ridiculed, Chidambaram said,'let me begin with the justification that was disarmingly simple and had gained considerable traction: ending the counterfeiting of currency. One year later we are told that out of the Rs 15,28,000 crore (by value, of demonetised currency notes) that was returned to the RBI, there was only Rs 41 crore, by value, of fake currency. Hence, demonetisation was not the answer to fake Indian currency notes.'
Questioning the government's claims that demonetisation was aimed at ending corruption and eliminating black money, Chidambaram said, 'Despite demonetisation, corruption thrives. Bribe givers and bribe takers are being caught regularly, often red-handed. As far as black money is concerned, income that is taxable is generated every day, a portion of that income escapes tax and is used for various purposes — such as giving bribes, funding elections, paying capitation fees, betting, hiring casual labour etc.'
The Congress recently held protests on November 8, the first anniversary of announcement of demonetisation, observing it as a 'Black day '.