Sun, Dec 11, 2016 | updated 07:18 PM IST

Demonetisation is 'ill-thought out' initiative: Congress

Updated: Nov 10, 2016 14:00 IST

New Delhi [India], Nov. 10 (ANI): The Congress Party on Thursday alleged that the Centre's move to ban Rs. 500 and 1000 currency notes would have no effect on the crackdown of black money and terror financing while dubbing the initiative to be 'ill-thought out' with least concern for the common public.

"Let me summarise on this issue by saying it may be well intentioned. Terrorism, fake currencies are vital issues, it is knee-jerk, ill-thought out and possibly not at all intended for and having no effect on black-money," Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi told ANI.

"In 1978, when this was done the effect on the black-money was less than 10 percent. The amount of negative public interest generated on the 'aam aadmi', on the small trader verses the benefit in terms of black money control alone. I think it's far outweighed by the former. And people in their knee-jerk hasty reactions, without adequate planning, without thinking the issue through, are really causing a disservice to public interest," he added.

Earlier in the day, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley assured that people depositing smaller amounts less than 2.5 lakh would not attract harassments from the Income Tax (IT) officials, adding that the banks across the country would open on weekends and extend their working hours to ensure that requisite replacement of currency is available to the people.

"It is only those with large amounts of undisclosed money who will have to face the consequences under existing laws," Jaitley said at the two-day Economic Editor's Conference here.

He said that people might as of now think that they are facing problems, but they will definitely benefit from the government's decision in the long run.

"This decision (scrapping of Rs 500/1000 notes) will impact the spending habits of people. We are trying to ensure at the earliest requisite replacement currency is available to people. There is no need to rush in initial days," Jaitley said.

Chief Economic Advisor Arvind Subramanian said the decision by the government would see reduction of wealth as it would lead to transfer of unaccounted wealth and help the government to spend in public sector projects.

"It should be seen as a transfer of this unaccounted wealth from private sector to Government and public sector, which will boost economy," Subramanian said. (ANI)