RS adjourned till 3 p.m. as demonetisation war continues

| Updated: Nov 24, 2016 20:01 IST

New Delhi, Nov. 24 (ANI): The Rajya Sabha has been adjourned till 3 p.m. as the government and opposition continued to lock horns and trade charges against each other during the debate on demonetisation of high-value currency notes. Adamant on Prime Minister Narendra Modi's intervention in Rajya Sabha on the government's decision to demonetise high-value currency notes, Leader of Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad said, "We were assured that PM will listen to us and answer us." "What did opposition say while 2G? That PM will sit and he did so for two days. Now you cannot run away," he added. Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley hit back at the opposition for devising ways to avoid the debate on demonetisation in the Upper House. "Opposition is devising ways to avoid the debate, these actions just prove it," he added. Earlier in the day, a united opposition cornered the government over the move and alleged that the ruling dispensation has least concern for the common man of the nation. Former prime minister Dr Manmohan Singh alleged that monumental mismanagement has been undertaken in implementation of demonetisation. Dr Singh asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to find out a practical and pragmatic solution to prevent this distress that has been caused to the common public. Dr Singh, who led the Congress charge in the Rajya Sabha, highlighted the problems of demonetisation. "It is important to take note of the grievances faced by the people over demonetisation in the country. The PM has said that we should wait for 52 days, it is a short period. But for those who are poor and deprived, those 50 days can bring about a disastrous affect in the country," said Dr Singh. The former prime minister said demonetisation can weaken and erode the confidence in the currency and banking system in the country. "I would want to know from the PM the names of any countries he may think of where people have deposited money in the banks, but are not allowed to withdraw their money. This alone I think is enough to condemn what has been done in the name of demonetisation," said Dr Singh. "In my opinion this scheme of demonetisation, the way it is being implemented will hurt the agriculture growth in our country, will hurt small industry, will hurt all those people who are in the informal sectors in the economy," he added. Dr Singh further said the national income that is the GDP of the country can decline about two percent as a result of this move. "This is an underestimate and not overestimate, therefore, I feel that the PM must come with some constructive proposal of how we can implement this scheme and at the same time prevent this distress that has been caused to the common people. It is no good that every day the banking system comes with modification of the rules, the conditions with which the people can withdraw money that reflects very poorly on the PM's office, on the FM's office and on the RBI," said Dr Singh. "I am very sorry that the RBI has been exposed to this sort of criticism which I think is fully justified," he added. Leader of the House Arun Jaitley objected to the decision of the Deputy Chairman to allow the former prime minister to speak in the Zero Hour. He said if Dr Singh wants to speak on demonetisation, then the House should resume the discussion. (ANI)