<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Former finance minister and senior Congress leader P Chidambaram on Friday took a jibe at Prime Minister Narendra Modi, saying since 50 days of the demonetization drive are over, all restrictions should be removed and normalcy should be restored.’It is fair to expect that there will be no queues outside bank branches and ATMs. It is fair to expect that all ATMs will be open round the clock and fully stocked with currency notes. It is fair to expect that the bank branch will pay out the money written on the cheque and not direct the drawer to write another cheque for a smaller amount,’ Chidambaram said while addressing media.Chidambaram sarcastically said that only the Prime Minister can provide an assurance on the removal of restrictions after 50 days of demonetization as the opposition has been dubbed as supporters of black money hoarders and tax evaders by him.’I wish I could hold out assurances on the matter (demonetization), but none of us in the opposition can, because the government has dubbed all of us in the opposition as supporters of black money hoarders and tax evaders,’ he said.Condemning the government for implementing a currency ban without prior planning, Chidambaram reiterated his opinion of demonetization being a case of total mismanagement.’I had also cautioned that the test of demonetization lies in the manner in which it will be implemented. It is now abundantly clear that the whole exercise was undertaken without forethought and planning; without consulting key officials; without understanding the crucial role of money in circulation’ Altogether, the whole exercise has been a case of total mismanagement, administrative collapse and widespread corruption,’ he said.Pointing towards government’s changing stand on the announcement, Chidambaram called it an absurd and undesirable goal. ‘The government has tried to change the narrative from black money and corruption to a cashless economy. No economy can become — or has become – totally cashless. We support encouraging high-value transactions to adopt the digital mode, but to insist that even low-value transactions should go cashless is an absurd and undesirable goal,’ he said.The minister also put forward his two demands and urged the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to make it public- 1. The Agenda note and the minutes of the meeting of the Board of Directors of RBI held on November 8, 2016; and2. The Note for Cabinet on demonetization placed before the Cabinet on November 8, 2016.Prime Minister Modi is all set to address the nation on New Year’s Eve regarding the same issue of demonetization, which marked its 50 days on Friday.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Terming the demonetization decision as “historic,” Madhya Pradesh CM, Shivraj Singh Chouhan said Prime Minister, Narendra Modi with his “courageous” call broke the myth that powerful people can’t be harmed in the country.”India witnessed a historic decision on November 8, 2016. This day has given a meaningful reply to the queries raised by the people at large on the style of functioning of governments. “Often allegations are levelled against the governments that they can not take tough decisions under pressure. They fear to take decisions that could harm powerful people,” Chouhan said in his blog on the issue on Thursday evening.”Our PM has broken the myth with his courageous decision to demonetize Rs 500 and Rs 1000 currency notes,” he said. “The decision of demonetization is historic in a way that it surprised everyone and this is the distinct feature of it. India has seen decision of demonetization twice in the history of 100 years but those decisions gave ample time to the people having black money in the form of currency to change it.”Thus the main objective of the decision was partially met. This time, however the decision did not give any time to people with black money,” the Chief Minister said. Those criticising the decision say that it could have been taken with better planning and people should have been given ample time. It is beyond my comprehension as to whom these critics are referring to when they talk of giving time to people, he wrote in the blog.”Who are those about whom critics say time should have been given to them. It is obvious that they are favouring those who had black money in the form of currency,” Chouhan said. The decision of the Prime Minister to encourage cashless transaction is to transform the country from a developing nation to a developed one. All the aspects should be examined before criticising such a move, said Chouhan.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Cash shortages weeks after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s decision to abolish large currency notes is making allies and members of his ruling party anxious, with some distancing themselves from the move ahead of a series of state elections.Modi removed 500 and 1,000 rupee notes, worth around $7.50 and $15 respectively, on Nov. 8, billing it as an attempt to root out corruption, end terror financing and move the country into the age of digital payments.He promised to replace all old bills with enough new currency notes by the end of this month. But his government has struggled to do that, leading to long lines at banks and a slump in economy activity. Nearly 90 percent of transactions in India used to be in cash.
ALSO READ Demonetization broke the myth that powerful can’t be harmed: Shivraj Singh ChouhanInterviews with six lawmakers from Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and a senior leader of the party’s ideological parent, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), show his party cadre is starting to worry that the cash crunch could hurt their prospects in several states that go to the polls next year.Some parliamentarians said that while they thought Modi’s decision was good, its execution had been botched and they were faced with constituents who were increasingly upset.
ALSO READ Demonetization: Jaitley misleading people with his statements, says Congress”There is no doubt that it is difficult to convince voters that everything will be fine,” said Santosh Gangwar, the junior finance minister who is leading the BJP campaign in western Uttar Pradesh.”Every candidate who will be contesting polls is nervous because they feel people may not vote for the BJP … There is tension and we cannot deny it,” he said.
ALSO READ Demonetization: PM Modi criticises opposition for ‘openly protecting the dishonest’, slams Manmohan SinghOf the BJP’s 71 MPs from Uttar Pradesh, 28 have been to BJP President Amit Shah and the finance minister’s office to seek solutions for the cash crunch, said a senior finance ministry official.BJP EXPECTS “BIG VICTORY”BJP spokesman GVL Narasimha Rao said that despite temporary difficulties, the prime minister continued to enjoy overwhelming support.”Party cadres are highly enthused about a big victory in upcoming elections, and if a few are apprehensive, they will realise the reality soon,” Rao said.Disquiet within the BJP underscores how Modi’s unprecedented bet is turning into a test of popularity, and could go some way to determining his political future.It has become a central issue in Uttar Pradesh, India’s most populous state, where the outcome of elections early next year will be key for Modi’s expected bid for a second term in 2019.The opposition, led by the Congress party, has joined forces, mocking the government for being ill-prepared for so-called “demonetization” and blaming it for hardships faced by the poor as a result. It has called for Modi’s resignation.The senior RSS official said they had counselled Modi days before the move to take time to prepare the ground for such a massive exercise, including setting up two new mints and expanding the banking network, and to roll it out in phases.But the prime minister decided to press ahead, and he alone would bear responsibility for its failure or success, the official added.Earlier this month, N. Chandrababu Naidu, chief minister of the southern state Andhra Pradesh and a political ally of Modi, abruptly distanced himself from the move.Modi and senior members of his cabinet defend demonetization. In an interview with India Today magazine on Thursday, Modi said it would give the economy a boost and provide long-term benefits, including forcing the country’s vast shadow economy into the open.”GRIM SITUATION”Modi’s announcement enjoyed popular support at first, with many people prepared to endure hardship as long as others were forced to give up ill-gotten wealth or pay tax.But shortages of new 500 and 2,000 rupee notes have caused tempers to rise as millions queue at banks and ATMs to draw money.Last week, more than three dozen BJP lawmakers, many of whom came from states that go to polls next year, met with Shah to demand that the government sends more cash to their constituencies, and quickly.The MPs told Shah about severe cash shortages and hardship to local businesses and ordinary people, according to several lawmakers who attended the meeting.They told the BJP president that they did not have the courage to hold election rallies at a time when people still had to stand in line, sometimes for hours, to get money. Some said they had not started door-to-door campaigning.”The situation is grim, and we cannot ignore it,” Jagdambika Pal, a BJP lawmaker from Uttar Pradesh who attended the meeting, told Reuters. “It is a challenge for every BJP lawmaker to manage the situation, but we cannot do anything if there is no money in the banks.”
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The last time Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the nation on a late evening, he had taken the country by surprise. As the 50-day period after demonetization expires, he is all set to make another address through public broadcaster Doordarshan, this time before the dawn of the New Year. Speculation is rife about the speech — whether it would be about another unforeseen announcement, a road map of the post-demonetization scenario, a thanks to the people, or more incentives for the common man.Modi had said in his public rallies after demonetization that for 50 days people would have to endure the troubles in the aftermath of demonetization to help him deliver the “India of your dreams”. At a meeting with BJP MPs during the Winter Session of Parliament, Modi had said there would be a, “New India in the New Year”.If these statements are any indication, the Prime Minister could be aimed at assuaging the people, either in his address to the nation or at his Lucknow rally on January 2. However, the content of his address is likely to be shrouded in secrecy, like the last one when he announced the decision to ban old Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 notes.He could be just thanking the people for bearing the inconvenience caused after demonetization, sources said. Modi has been indicating that demonetization was just the beginning of the fight against corruption and that steps would be taken against benami property.Under attack from the Opposition for the inconvenience caused to people in the aftermath of demonetization, this would also give the Prime Minister an opportunity to counter it. The issue had stalled the entire Winter Session, giving neither Modi nor Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi a chance to speak on the floor of the House.The government is confident that the worst was over and things had started moving towards normalcy. BJP is confident that Modi’s gamble has paid off, projecting him as a decisive Prime Minister who has taken a bold decision of fighting corruption.Meanwhile, Rahul Gandhi, at a hurriedly convened press conference on Wednesday, reeled out a set of demands which included exposing names of black money hoarders in Swiss banks, return of “financial independence” by removing the limit of withdrawals of Rs 24,000 a week from the bank accounts, and compensating the poor and traders who have suffered. Rahul also posed questions, such as how much black money had been found after the announcement of demonetization on November 8, the extent of the economic loss to the nation and how many people have lost their jobs due to demonetization.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>As many as 60 lakh individuals and firms have made large deposits totalling an astonishing Rs 7 lakh crore in old notes, top government officials said on Thursday while warning that every penny of tax will be extracted as the black money does not become white by merely putting it in banks.They said the government will not hound any genuine depositor but at the same time will not hesitate in tracking all such deposits and litigating any tax evasion by a black money holder trying to convert illegal wealth.Post demonetization, unaccounted wealth holders have an option to avail of a tax evasion amnesty scheme Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana (PMGKY) and pay their dues, failing which the government’s long arms will surely catch them, they said.
ALSO READ Demonetization ordinance: Minimum Rs 10,000 fine for holding more than 10 scrapped notes, no jail term”People are thinking that money has come into the banking system and it has all become white. This is not so. We have been getting daily information of all the deposits above Rs 2 lakh, Rs 5 lakh and the number and amount deposited. We have been collating this information with past information about the each person,” a top government official said.”So, there is a huge scope for taxing now which has arisen and we do hope that people will understand that simply because they have put in bank it has become white that is not the case. We do hope that people themselves will come forward to participate in the scheme. But if they don’t, they are not going to be happy,” the official further said.
ALSO READ Post demonetization, auto sector to see sharp decline in DecemberThe tax department is armed with systems to track those with multiple banks accounts as well as those who are depositing in accounts of others and tax department will not leave anyone who is trying to evade taxes, he added. “Even if you take deposits of more than Rs 2 lakh, we have information about more then 60 lakh individuals, companies and institutions who have deposited more than Rs 7 lakh crore of money. That’s an astonishing number. We will be looking at it. For individuals the deposit figure would be Rs 3-4 lakh crore.”We do expect a lot of revenue buoyancy because of this either in this year or in subsequent years but nobody will go scot-free,” the official said.Following the demonetization of 500 and 1,000 rupee notes on November 8, the government has come out with PMGKY under which people can disclose unaccounted cash and come clean by paying 50%. Besides, the scheme provides for a mandatory deposit of 25% of such income in the zero-interest bearing Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Deposit Scheme, 2016, for four years. PMGKY commenced on December 17 and shall remain open for declarations and deposits up to March 31, 2017.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Seeking a white paper on demonetization, Congress posed several questions to the Prime Minister on Wednesday including how much black money has come in and put forth a charter of demands including lifting all restrictions on money withdrawal and compensation to farmers, traders and the poor who have “suffered” due to note ban.Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi also demanded that Prime Minister Narendra Modi should double the MNREGA wages and the number of days each labourer can work, besides giving 50% rebate in Income Tax and Sales Tax to shopkeepers and 20% bonus on MSP for Rabi crops to farmers and waiving their loans. Coming out with the “Charter of Demands” before the media, he sought a list of all those who have deposited above Rs 25 lakh before demonetization was announced and sought relief to those badly affected including provision of Rs 25,000 to at least one woman of each BPL family.”We want that the Prime Minister should explain some things to the country. After November 8, how much black money has come out and how much economic loss has the country suffered due to demonetization. How many people lost their lives and whether any compensation has been paid to them. “The Prime Minister should also tell whom he consulted before taking the decision and spell out the names of experts consulted. The Prime Minister should also provide a list of all those people who have deposited Rs 25 lakh or more in their accounts before demonetization,” he told reporters.
ALSO READ Scrap cash withdrawal limit, reveal how much black money recovered post demonetization: Rahul to ModiAs part of the demands, Rahul Gandhi said all restrictions on withdrawal of money be lifted with immediate effect and till the time these restrictions are in place, a special interest at the rate of 18% per annum be given to all. He also sought that all charges on digital transactions should be abolished forthwith, adding that the charter of demands was “on behalf of the people of India”.Gandhi said the price of of ration distributed under the PDS system should be halved for the period of a year under the provisions of the Food Security Act and a special one-time bonus of 20% should be provided over and above the MSP of all Rabi crops. “That Rs 25,000 should be deposited in the account of at least one woman belonging to each BPL family as compensation for the immense suffering caused to women due to demonetization,” the demands charter said.
ALSO READ Demonetization: Rahul and Mamata slam Modi, BJP calls opposition meet a ‘flop show’Gandhi also said that an Income Tax and Sales tax rebate of 50% should be given to small shopkeepers and businesses. The central government should compensate state governments for loss of revenue incurred on account of this exemption,he said. The Congress Vice President also demanded that the number of guaranteed work days and the wage rate under MGNREGA should be doubled for a period of one year.He also demanded that government should organise a special drive to identify and register those who lost their jobs since November 8 and provide them compensation at the applicable minimum wage rate for a period up to March 31. Lashing out at Modi, the Congress leader alleged that the Prime Minister did this demonetization ‘yagya’ for only 50 families while the poor and small shopkeepers have suffered and government should provide compensation to these people.
ALSO READ Demonetization: Tejaswi Yadav backs Mamata’s ‘super emergency’ assertionHe said the money deposited in banks is that of the people of the country and the limit imposed by him on bank accounts should be withdrawn immediately to help restore their financial independence. “The farmers have been hit hard. He should waive their loans and provide 20% bonus in MSP to farmers,” he said, adding that small shopkeepers be also compensated by providing 50% rebate on sales tax and income tax. “The Prime Minister has to tell the country why he caused pain to the poor people and snatched their financial independence.”Narendra Modi should answer when he will present the list of all Swiss bank holders before the lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha, the list that has been provided to him by the Swiss government. We want to know who are these thieves and why is Modi saving them,” he said.In the questions posed to the Prime Minister, Gandhi asked, “What was the process of consultation and preparedness followed prior to the implementation of demonetization? Why were experts, economists or the RBI not consulted before unleashing this draconian policy upon the people?.” He also asked the government to place the names of all persons, institutions and entities that deposited Rs 25 lakh or more in bank accounts in six months preceding November 8.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Shiv Sena on Wednesday asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to ensure that the proposed law against ‘benami’ properties would not hit the common man as hard as the demonetization measure that has “harried the middle class”.Vowing to carry forward the war against corruption and black money post-demonetization, Modi had on Sunday said the government will soon operationalise a strong law to effectively deal with ‘benami’ properties.”Modi launched a surgical strike against black money to weed out money stashed abroad. But the truth is, not a single penny has been recovered. The rich of the country have incurred not even a dime’s loss after the demonetization, whereas the commonman has been harried,” an editorial in Sena mouthpiece ‘Saamana’ said.”Now what is the government’s plan against benami properties? We hope that the middle class citizens are not crushed under the harsh steps taken by the government as did happen after demonetization. Hope that the real benami property holders do not legalise their properties while common man is stripped naked,” the ruling alliance partner said.It also said the steps taken against the rich and black money holders in fact had an adverse effect on the common people.Once an announcement on benami properties is made, those possessing estates will convert all of it into “white” within 24 hours, like hundreds of crores were converted into “white” after the demonetization decision, the Sena said.”It seems that laws are only meant to safeguard the rich while the poor get crushed under them,” it further said.The party also said that those who were hailing the surgical strike across the LoC have now stopped doing so after continued attacks by the neighbouring nation killed over 50 soldiers since the Indian military action.The Sena also sought to know from the government if it will ensure that Kashmiri Pandits get their “fair share” of land back in Kashmir before it starts accumulating ‘benami’ properties.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Launching a scathing attack on opposition parties, the Bharatiya Janata Party has said that the the former is fighting for their own difficulties and not for the public.”Opposition has not remained opposition anymore. Their coalition has broken as many parties have left, this is their first failure. The opposition has decided to protest after 30th December and no one has stopped them for doing that, they should continue with their protest as they will move away from the people the more protest they will do,” said BJP leader Rahul Sinha.He said the opposition is not finding a way to get out of the loss caused to them because of demonetization and on the pretext of fighting for the people they are making unconstitutional statements.Responding to West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s statement of labelling Modi government as faceless, Sinha said that Mamta herself is becoming faceless as her neat and clean political image was tarnished by the Saradha scam.He said it has also been proved that opposition’s fight against the demonetization is the fight for the black money and for the people who own black money.”The more the opposition will raise their voice, the more BJP will gain,” he said.Sinha said it is unfortunate that opposition has not learnt from the recent election results in which the people have approved that the decision of demonetization was right.He said the Prime Minister will not reply to Rahul Gandhi, he will respond to the people and people till now have supported him.”Prime Minister himself had said that he is ready to face any decision that the people of this country will announce for him. People are giving their verdict that they are with the Prime Minister in this fight against the Black money,” Sinha said.”People don’t have any interest in Rahul Gandhi allegations. Opposition does not have any issue and their protest on the demonetization has also not worked, they don’t have anything and are just making unconstitutional statements.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Unfazed by the absence of leaders of the Left, JD(U), SP and BSP, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi and Trinamool chief Mamata Banerjee along with some regional parties sought to put up a united face on Tuesday, raising the pitch against demonetization by demanding the resignation of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.After the eight-party meeting, the leaders also sought a probe into the issue of “personal corruption” of Modi with Gandhi insisting that a “free and fair” inquiry was needed to maintain the credibility of the Prime Minister’s post. Banerjee, whose presence rescued the Congress’ plan of replicating the opposition unity witnessed in Parliament recently on the note ban issue, virtually stole the show by placing the resignation demand, a position subsequently echoed by Gandhi.Both Gandhi and Banerjee spoke of a “common minimum agenda” being evolved to take the opposition unity forward even as he downplayed the absence of several other parties, including the Left, from Tuesday’s meet which preceded the press conference.
ALSO READ Sonia Gandhi’s attempts to revive Oppn unity coming a cropperEscalating the attack on Modi, Gandhi described the note ban as a “single arbitrary financial experiment in the history of the world that affected 1.3 billion people” and asked him to explain the “real” reason for implementing it and take responsibility for giving pain to people. He also raised the demand that Modi answer the charges of “personal corruption” made against him in the wake of his name allegedly figuring in the “Sahara and Birla diaries”. “Will you take responsibility over demonetization and resign. Will you resign from Prime Ministership,” Banerjee asked, as she termed demonetization as a “mega scam” in the name of “achhe din” (good days). The West Bengal Chief Minister said that 47 days are over and only three days are left in the 50-day period sought by Modi for return of normalcy post the note ban.
ALSO READ Incumbent upon Rahul to substantiate corruption charge against PM: NCP”He is not a magician to perform magic. No miracle will happen. You promised to bring ‘achhe din’. Are these ‘achhe din’? In the name of cashless, Modi government has become faceless and baseless. “Demonetization is not a small issue. If government becomes weak, the country is weakened,” she said.Asked what if the PM did not resign, Gandhi said, “If he does not resign, we will put pressure on him to resign.” The Congress leader said, “It was on the Prime Minister’s personal initiative that this arbitrary financial experiment was carried out for the first time in the world history that affected 1.3 billion people. Such an experiment was never done even during Mao’s reign in China.”
ALSO READ Demonetization: Problems will not end after December 30, says Rahul GandhiGandhi also claimed that demonetization has made no impact on black money and dubbed it as “an attack on financial independence” and poor people of the country. “PM should come out with the real aim of demonetization and answer who is responsible for the suffering of the poor and what is he doing for those who have been hit. The aim of demonetization has failed.””The Prime Minister says he is fighting corruption but he is not answering the questions raised about him. The Prime Minister should be the first person to say that since there are charges against him there should be a free and fair probe,” the Congress leader said.Asked about former Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit’s name figuring in the same documents, Gandhi replied, “Sheilaji herself is saying that she has no problem with an inquiry. Why Narendra Modiji is not saying that. While there are many names in ‘Sahara diaries’, his name appears clearly in the e-mail of Vice President of Aditya Birla group.”The parties whose representatives were present at Tuesday’s meeting were RJD, DMK, JD-S, JMM, IUML and AIUDF, besides the Congress and Trinamool Congress. In the just-concluded Parliament session, Gandhi brought together a total of 16 opposition parties on the note ban issue, some of which distanced themselves after his meeting with the Prime Minister on December 16 on farmers’ issues.Gandhi claimed that demonetization has “failed” on fronts like countering terrorism, counterfeit currency, black money and corruption – all stated objectives of the Prime Minister. With the Prime Minister alleging that only the corrupt are opposing the note ban, the Congress vice president said that Modi can take whatever action he wants against the leaders.At the same time, he said that the opposition would be one with government in any legislation to tackle corruption, including the one on Benami properties. He said he should make public the names of all those who have accounts abroad and bring back absconding businessmen Vijay Mallya and Lalit Modi.On the ‘Sahara-Birla’ matter, Gandhi sought to dismiss BJP’s claims that the Supreme Court has not found any merit in the allegations. Some observations might have come but the judgement is yet to come, he said. Singling out Modi, Banerjee said that the country was witnessing a “super emergency” under his rule without its formal declaration. All sections of society are being frightened by saying “Gabbar is coming, Gabbar is coming”, the West Bengal Chief Minister said suggesting that the country cannot be run through such threats and accused the PM of taking away people’s rights.She also accused the Centre of playing politics with non-BJP ruled states wondering as to why her state should not get what Assam gets. She also hit out at the Prime Minister “for not taking Parliament into confidence” on such a big decision as demonetization. “Not even a single line statement was laid on the table of the House. This is not only unethical, it is illegal and unconstitutional,” she said.Alleging that demonetization has wreaked havoc, she said that it has seen growth in unemployment and a collapse of the banking system. Making fun of the digital push by the Modi government in the wake of demonetization, Banerjee said that it was strange “given the fact that in 92% of the villages in the country, there are no bank branches”.She claimed that even in advanced countries like the US and Germany, the transactions are to the tune of 40%. RJD’s Jai Prakash Narain Yadav said note ban is an “anti-people” and “very painful” decision in which 130 people lost their lives.He held the Prime Minister responsible for it and said the rich had been benefited and the poor ‘looted’ and termed the situation as “very serious”. DMK’s Tiruchi Siva said “the country is facing a financial crisis” due to demonetization and people have been made to suffer as its implementation has been “ill conceived”. He said the initiative has turned out to be an “utter failure. Heroism is different from realty”. Banerjee said people have become “landless, cashless and voiceless” and “we have come together to lend voice to people, who have been suffering”.Meanwhile, CPI leader D Raja, whose party did not attend the opposition meet, said the December 30 deadline on demonetization has led to “a financial chaos and turmoil in the country, causing unimaginable misery and hardship to people. “The economy as a whole is affected which has led to loss of jobs. It has ruined the livelihood of common people. The Prime Minister should own up responsibility and tell the people what forced him to take such a decision,” Raja said, asking how could so many people be caught with huge amounts of new currency.BJP’s reactionMocking the Congress-led meet of eight parties against demonetization, BJP said it was Rahul Gandhi’s “flop show” and that the bubble of opposition unity had burst before it could even take off. Noting that only eight of the 16 parties which had joined hands in Parliament against the Modi government over note ban were present, Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad took potshots at Rahul, saying it was increasingly becoming clear that he lacked “maturity and gravitas” and that he would soon be left alone to “hurl abuses without substance”.Prasad told a press conference that the opposition’s exercise was “laughable” as, he said, those who were behind scams like 2G spectrum, Saradha chit fund and coal block allocations had come together to attack Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “We all saw Rahul Gandhi’s flop show today. Those who claimed about opposition unity could merely bring together eight of the 16 parties. Soon they will be reduced to four. Then Rahul Gandhi will be left on his own…to hurl abuses without substance. The bubble of opposition unity has burst before it could take off,” he said.The senior BJP leader kept Congress and Rahul Gandhi in his line of fire and skipped any mention of TMC chief and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who has been a staunch critic of the government’s demonetization move and again attacked Modi.Noting that earlier parties would work together to put up a joint front against Congress, he said the opposition’s press conference was a victory for BJP and loss for Congress as it showed that as the saffron party has emerged as the centre of polity now.Rahul and his party have been the biggest patron of corruption, Prasad alleged, saying that he kept quiet during the UPA government when several scams happened. Attacking the Congress vice president over his charges against Modi, Prasad said these were “baseless and shameful comments”.”Everyday we get this indication that Rahul Gandhi lacks maturity. It is increasingly evident that his utterances are lacking in maturity and gravitas. Even today we saw that he made some baseless and shameful allegations against the Prime Minister which the leaders sitting beside him did not repeat. It itself makes clear how serious are his comments,” he said.The demonetization exercise, Prasad said, is aimed at turning the country honest and that the people have backed Modi. “The opposition’s press conference makes it clear that who have been the worst hit by this. Such parties were sitting together who are linked with biggest scams in independent India… We all know that severe action is being taken by the government daily. Why is Rahul Gandhi troubled?” he asked.The Law Minister also alleged that Gandhi wants to help those with suspect accounts in Swiss banks by demanding that the government disclose their names. Prasad said disclosing those names before these account holders were charge-sheeted will go against bilateral treaties with different countries and the Supreme Court has “appreciated” this stand.Asked about Gandhi’s demand for a probe into Birla and Sahara diaries details which, he has alleged, showed Modi’s “personal corruption”, Prasad hit back demanding his response to scams during the UPA government Gandhi played a role in scuttling the “honest probe” into the 2G scam by JPC, he alleged. Prasad also attacked AAP for “evading” questions on its donors and said it was doing so even after its “godfather and guru” Anna Hazare wrote a letter to party chief Arvin Kejriwal in this regard.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Congress demanded an independent probe into the “Sahara diaries” in which names of former Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit and that of some other chief ministers also purportedly figure. “Whoever, whichever name is there should be investigated. There should be an independent probe into whosoever’s name is there. Why are you shying away from an impartial, independent probe?,” Congress spokesperson Jairam Ramesh told reporters.He said there should first be an investigation and in the course of which some names may prove to be wrong. Ramesh said action can be taken only after a probe. He also demanded an independent probe against all those BJP leaders who allegedly knew of the demonetization decision before the Prime minister announced it on November 8. He asked whether Prime Minister Narendra Modi would order an independent time-bound probe to ascertain whether there was any money laundering by certain BJP leaders and whether they were in the know of demonetization before it was announced.”Maximum Governance, Minimum Government”, “Maximum Drama, Minimum Governance” and “Maximum Publicity, Minimum Governance”, this is the motto of Narendra Modi,” he said, dubbing demonetization as a “complete failure” and an “unmitigated disaster”. He claimed that Ahmedabad District Cooperative Bank, which had received Rs 500 crore deposits within two days of demonetization and asked why there was no probe into it.The Congress leader also asked who was Mahesh Shah, who had declared over Rs 13,860 crore under the income disclosure scheme, and asked whether some leaders were involved and whether any money laundering was being done at their behest.To a question on introduction of Benami Property Act and its implementation by the Government, Ramesh said the fight against corruption is a long drawn out fight.”It will require law; it will require tough executive action. Whatever steps the Government takes which we feel is going to be effective, will automatically get our support.”Any serious, well considered step and well thought out step to deal with corruption and black money will automatically be welcomed by us,” he said.”However, if Benami Property Act also becomes a gimmick like demonetization , then we are against it. demonetization has taught us, that economic policy is a serious business; these are serious issues which unfortunately the Prime Minister is unable to understand because his Governance philosophy is maximum headline minimum governance,” he said.The Congress leader said, “We are not North Korea, we are not Venezuela. We are not disintegrating Soviet Union. We are not a bankrupt Mynamar. We are an economy that is growing at 7-1/2 per cent per year and no economist in his right mind would ever recommend demonetization to an economy that is growing at that rate. demonetization has been an unmitigated disaster.”
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Amid talks of the grand alliance for upcoming Uttar Pradesh polls, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar on Saturday had a dig at the Congress, Samajwadi Party and Rashtriya Lok Dal, saying demonetization by Narendra Modi has left them in no condition to contest on their own strength.”Demonetization has caused such a powerful impact that none of these parties could be able to contest the UP Assembly polls independently,” Parrikar told reporters in response to a query over the talks about formation of ‘Mahagatbandhan’ with SP, Congress and RLD as its constituents. The minister was here to attend the 62nd national convention of Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) here.Parrikar said demonetization of high value currency notes has curbed “several illegal activities” in the country.”People may be facing some problems due to demonetization, but the common man is ready to face such problems, given the good impact of this move in the long run,” the BJP leader said. Parrikar evaded direct reply on the controversial AgustaWestland Helicopter deal, saying the matter is being investigated by CBI which doesn’t work under his ministry. “We have provided all information to CBI in this matter. I could not make any comment on this issue,” Parrikar said.On escalation of tension on Indo-Pak border, Parrikar said peace is prevailing at the border to an extent as of now.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>PM Narendra Modi on Saturday inaugurated a new campus of Sebi-run National Institute of Securities Markets (NISM) at Patalganga in neighbouring Raigad district near Mumbai, and said that he will not shy away from taking difficult decisions if they are in country’s interest.Addressing a gathering, Modi said that the demonetization is a short-term pain, but it will benefit in long-term.Stating that the government is very keen to encourage start-ups and stock markets are essential for the start-up ecosystem, Modi added,”Our markets should show that they are able to successfully raise capital for projects benefiting the vast majority of our population.”Here are the 12 things PM Modi said during his address # This is time of slowdown in global economy; India is being seen as a bright spot with growth projected to be highest in world.# India’s place as the fastest growing large economy has not come about by accident.# In less than 3 years, government has transformed economy, cut fiscal deficit, CAD; foreign exchange reserves have grown, inflation is lower.# Long awaited GST will soon be a reality; FDI is at record levels.# Financial markets can play an important role in the modern economy. However history has shown that financial markets can also do damage if not properly regulated.# Government will continue to follow sound and prudent economic policies. We will not take decisions for short-term political point scoring.# Will not shy away from taking difficult decisions if they are in country’s interest. # Demonetization is a short-term pain, but will benefit in long-term.# My aim is to make India a developed country in one generation.# India has earned a good name for its well regulated securities markets.# Government is very keen to encourage start-ups. Stock markets are essential for the start-up ecosystem.# Stock markets should help in raising capital for productive purpose; bond market must become source of long-term infra finance.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Damage to India’s economic growth is likely to be bigger than the RBI’s estimates, as there could be a sharper slowdown in the near-term as cash shortage is likely to extend into the first quarter of next year, says a Nomura report.”We concur with the RBI’s view that the impact of demonetization is likely to be transitory. However, with the cash shortage spilling over into Q1 2017, our leading indicators are pointing to a sharper slowdown in near-term growth,” the Japanese financial services major said in a research note.Nomura further said, “As such, we expect the growth damage to be larger than the RBI’s estimates”.The report also said November’s CPI readings suggest that demonetization contributed 25-30 bps to the fall in headline CPI inflation via lower perishable item prices, slightly more than the RBI’s estimate of 10-15 bps, and most core inflation measures eased by 20 bps in November.”In this backdrop, and barring any major global disruption, we believe growth and inflation readings will be supportive of policy easing,” it said.Nomura expects the RBI to cut the repo rate by 25 bps to 6 per cent in February and stay on hold thereafter, once the transitory effects start to fade.On December 7, RBI kept interest rates unchanged despite calls for lowering it while it slashed the economic growth projection by half a per cent to 7.1 in the first policy review post demonetization.The next monetary policy meet is on February 8.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Bharatiya Janata Party(BJP) on Thursday said the critical comment made by Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu was unexpected as he is a responsible member of the ruling National Democratic Alliance(NDA).”Chandrababu Naidu is a seasoned politician and a responsible NDA partner, any irresponsible statement cannot be made by him. He is one of the first leaders to support the demonetization move and making such statement was not expected of him,” BJP leader Prem Shukla said in Mumbai.Naidu said, “It (demonetization) was not their wish”, but on Wednesday, refuted media reports that he was against demonetization, clarifying that he had only “commented on the lapses in the implementation”.
ALSO READ Breaking my head daily, but unable to find a solution: Naidu’s turnaround on demonetizationNaidu, in a statement, said he had expressed his concern over the suffering of people even after more than one month due to non-availability of currency. “It is very painful to see reports of old people collapsing while waiting at ATM counters,” he said.The Andhra Pradesh chief minister, who heads a 13-member committee appointed by the Central Government to look into demonetization issues, said he repeatedly appealed to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and local bankers to adopt a humanitarian approach to prevent inconvenience to people by delivering more number of small currency notes to rural areas.Stating that cashless and digital banking transaction is the only alternative to end the crisis, Naidu, who is spending more than three-four hours a day monitoring the cash distribution system, asked the officials to think innovatively to address the crisis and to encourage urban people to switch over to mobile-banking transactions and distribute the available small currency to farmers in rural areas to carry out agricultural operations for the current Rabi season.He said that cashless transactions were successfully implemented in all 29,000 fair price shops in the state and the dealers of FP shops were appointed as banking correspondents to solve currency problem in rural areas.Addressing a party function of Telugu Desam Party in Vijayawada on Tuesday, Naidu said, “Demonetization is not our will and wish hence our state people are also facing several problems.”Highlighting the problem faced by the people due to the move, he said people’s income has decreased and the Centre is unable to provide funds. “Income has decreased and findings are also not coming from the Central Government,” said Naidu, who had extended his support to the Prime Minister’s decision to ban high-denomination notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000, as “a moral victory for the TDP”.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The agriculture sector is all set to bounce back leaving two years of drought behind and may well pull off record foodgrain output of 270 million tonnes in 2016-17 on good rains, but farmers’ woes may continue due to adverse impact of notes ban and low sales realisation.The farm growth is estimated to rise at over 5% this fiscal, from 1.2% in the previous year, on the back of record kharif foodgrain production at 135 million tonnes (mt) and likely bumper output in the ongoing rabi season, helped by good monsoon in most parts of the country.”The agriculture sector has done well during the year. We received good monsoon after facing the drought year. Kharif in general was very good and rabi sowing has been brisk. We are hopeful of bumper production this year,” Agriculture Secretary Shobhana Pattanayak said in an interview.Although agri-experts have raised concerns about impact of demonetization on rabi crops and the likely effect of forecast of warm winter on wheat crop, the secretary said the government is not “downgrading” the target for 2016-17 crop year. “Our target is to achieve foodgrain production of 270 million tonnes while our last peak production was 265.04 mt in 2013-14 crop year (July-June),” he said.”Agriculture sector growth was lower last year because of drought. But from that level, we will move higher.” On farm sector growth, NITI Aayog Member Ramesh Chand said: “It will be spectacular growth after facing two drought years. We are expecting a growth of 5.5% this year.” The growth rate of agriculture and allied sectors will be 5.3% even if wheat productivity throughout the country is lower by 3% due to rise in temperature, he said.Asked about adverse impact of demonetization on farmers, Pattanayak said there is not much impact as the credit system has been strong in rural areas and farmers have become more resilient over the years. “Our farmers have witnessed very strong drought in last two years and yet they have bounced back. I don’t think it has really impacted,” he said. However, farmers’ organisations as well as former agriculture minister Sharad Pawar have expressed deep concern about impact of demonetization, saying farmers are unable to buy quality seeds and fertilisers for their rabi crop and are also facing problems in selling crops for want of demand.Despite record kharif production this year and expected good crop in the rabi season, farmers’ conditions continue to be grim due to lower sales realisation, with domestic and global commodity prices staying depressed. The demonetization of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes has also affected the domestic demand of fruits and vegetables, forcing farmers to sell their produce at throwaway price.About farmers’ woes, agri-economist Ashok Gulati said: “This year, production is likely to bounce back and therefore, much better than last year. However, farmers are already under debt. And prices of cotton, basmati rice and, with demonetization, many fresh fruits and vegetables are depressed. Because of that, despite higher production levels, farmers have not gained much.”2016 began on a sticky note as the country’s overall foodgrain output remained flat at 252 mt in 2015-16 crop year due to second straight year of drought. Pulse output fell to 16.5 mt resulting in high prices for most part of the year that kept the government on its toes, which took various steps to cool prices and bring relief to consumers.The measures like domestic procurement and import to boost local supplies helped ease the prices of tur and urad from about Rs 200 a kg, but chana continues to rule high. As per the official estimate, wheat output rose to 93.55 mt, from 86 mt, but FCI’s procurement fell sharply and domestic prices of wheat and its products began to rise towards the end of the year. The government scrapped import duties on wheat to boost domestic supply. To provide relief to farmers hit by the cash crunch, the government has given them an additional two months to repay their crop loans due in November-December and said prompt repayment will be eligible for the extra 3% interest subsidy.The government had earlier allowed farmers to buy seeds through old Rs 500 notes from central and state-owned seed companies as well as from ICAR and central varsities. It had also asked fertiliser companies to sell soil nutrient on credit basis to farmers. To check food inflation, import duties on palm oils and potatoes were reduced. Stock limit on sugar mills were also imposed to check prices although improved domestic rates helped industry clear arrears to farmers.The year also saw the successful rollout of the landmark National Food Security Act (NFSA) across the country. Programmes like new crop insurance scheme and eNAM to link all 585 mandis on an electronic trading platform were announced to augment farmers’ income.In this year’s budget, the government raised agri-credit by Rs 50,000 crore to Rs 9 lakh crore for the current fiscal and levied 0.5% Krishi Kalyan cess on all taxable services to fund farm initiatives. Eminent scientist M S Swaminathan hailed the new schemes, but stressed on proper implementation. He also wanted the government to pay farmers 50% more than the production cost as part of the minimum support price (MSP).Expressing concern over poor implementation of agri schemes, Gulati, the former chairman of the Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices, said: “The government should focus completely on agriculture and try to implement some of the programmes properly.”The year also witnessed the government fixing the maximum retail price and royalty for cotton seeds, including Bt cotton, based on its order issued at the fag end of 2015. The move was opposed by biotechnology firms while the domestic seed manufacturers were in favour of the decision.Global biotechnology major Monsanto threatened to re-evaluate its India business. It plans to introduce new products, besides entering into the legal battle against this order. However, NCP supremo Pawar recently attacked the NDA government for taking such a move, saying “Indian agriculture is being brought back to licence and control raj which is detrimental to the growth of the sector”. “The government of the day should not have hostility to improve systems and technologies,” he said, adding that the government is overly “cautious” on the technology front. In May, the agriculture ministry had come out with a notification to regulate the cotton seed market with provisions for compulsory legislations and capping of royalty rates at up to 10% of the retail price. But it was forced to withdraw this notification amid protest from biotech companies.Genetically modified (GM) mustard, developed by the Delhi University’s Centre for Genetic Manipulation of Crop Plants, was in news throughout the year as regulatory body GEAC was vetting the proposal for commercial cultivation amid strong protest from green activists as well as RSS-backed Swadeshi Jagran Manch.Amid uncertainty over the government’s likely stand on GM crop cultivation, Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) Director General Trilochan Mohapatra said: “From the research side, the transgenic crop which we have developed should be ready, irrespective of whether the government will release them for commercial cultivation or not.” Five transgenic crops — brinjal, tomatoes, banana, castor, shorgum — are ready for large-scale field trials (BRL1), he said, and many GM crops are ready for confined trials.It will be interesting to see the government’s approach in the new year towards allowing cultivation of GM crops, particularly in food crops. At present, the government has allowed commercial cultivation of Bt cotton and there is moratorium on Bt brinjal due to protest from green activists.In 2017, the ongoing legal battle involving global MNC Monsanto, the government and the domestic seed industry will be keenly watched as the outcome will shape the future of regulations for selling GM seeds.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>It’s been over six weeks since November 8, when the unthinkable happened. In one fell swoop, PM Modi delegitimised Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes in an audacious bid to curb black money. What has happened post that has been nothing short of chaotic. The RBI and the Finance Ministry have literally made up rules on the go, chopping up and changing one arbitrary decision after another. It has been a baptism by fire for them, trying to outdo money launderers and black money hoarders. Unfortunately, hardworking average Indians have been caught in the crossfire. The latest decision to scrutinise any deposit above Rs 5,000 (issued this Monday) has left even the most ardent supporters of demonetization baffled.The Opposition has gone hammer and tongs over PM Modi’s decision, with Rahul Gandhi, Mamata Banerjee and Arvind Kejriwal almost indulging in a game to outdo each other by ramping up the rhetoric against the government. No one can disagree the common people have been greatly disadvantaged by currency swap and that the Opposition parties have tried their best to latch on to it. Yet, something curious seems to be happening in India’s political firmament. Across the states, the lotus continues to bloom unabated, notwithstanding the urban backlash BJP has received. The Maharashtra municipal poll results (till the third phase), by-elections in six states and the latest result from Chandigarh municipal corporation poll shows no signs of the BJP wave slowing down. If anything, it seems to have picked up after a momentary lull. What explains this dichotomy? Let’s look at some of the possible causes.PM Modi’s personal charisma‘Hum to fakir aadmi hai, jhola leke chal padenge’. To a large extent, this statement, made at a rally at Moradabad on December 3, explains Modi’s rustic charm and appeal among his core vote base. He is looked upon as an honest crusader against corruption, with no family to pass on wealth to or curry favour for. This is in stark contrast to the general dynasty-centric political norms in India, where often lineage and not ability dictates a person’s post in an organisation. The appeal of a quintessential outsider embarking on a Himalayan shake-up is too irresistible for a large section of the urban population, who had so far equated politicians with a staid pace of work and a penchant for amassing wealth. Modi offers a refreshing change in that regard and many are giving him the benefit of doubt for at least trying to change the system, notwithstanding the gigantic loopholes in the implementation. If the 2014 mandate demanded a big bang shake-up of the status quo, Modi has provided it via demonetization. Schadenfreude among common peopleThe German word ‘schadenfreude’ refers to the pleasure derived from someone else’s pain. The reaction to demonetization has been a textbook case of this. People have stood in line for hours and yet not complained, thinking that the wealthy must be suffering a lot more. The fault lines between the poor and the rich have always been stark, hence demonetization has been hailed as a great leveller. This is something PM Modi has managed to sell well by essentially branding the move as a pro-poor step meant to tighten the screws on the unscrupulous rich. Whether it has happened in reality or the rich have managed to give them a slip is immaterial. The perception lingers and that’s what matters in politics.‘Nation building’ in the age of hashtag activismIn another example of potent political messaging, the PM has managed to convey that all the hardships faced by the common man would not be in vain. In fact, it is an important path of nation building, a sacrifice of few hours for the greater good. To paraphrase PM Modi, this is the line to end all the queues of the past 70 years. At a time, when cyber warriors are in abundance, trolling people for not conforming to their set of beliefs, demonetization gives them the validation of not merely being hashtag activists. ‘If the soldiers can stand guard in Siachen, why can’t you stand in line?’ has been an oft-repeated argument in the last couple of weeks. For many who can’t ever think of joining the army or performing a similar level of sacrifice, standing in a queue for the sake of the nation is a quick path to patriotic nirvana.Shifting goalpost has helpedThe government has constantly shifted its goalpost about what exactly the main objective of demonetization is. From the initial thrust of eradicating black money and counterfeit currency, the focus has shifted to promoting digital economy. An aggressive PR campaign has meant that the real issues have been obfuscated. The government has managed to remain unscathed so far without quite revealing what it has gained from the entire exercise. Public reaction may take a turn for the worse when Q3 results of industries and other related economic indices are released in January 2017.Opposition’s unconvincing tiradeFrom day 1, some of the major allegations the Opposition has raised have been about how BJP workers and leaders were in the loop and how businessmen close to BJP were taken into confidence before the decision was announced publicly. Many accusations have been hurled but none have stuck so far, owing to the lack of any tangible proof. Merely calling demonetization a scam doesn’t make it one without any clear evidence. The Opposition may have lost out on a trick here by questioning the intent of demonetization rather than its merit. Sorry state of CongressThe present and future of the principle Opposition party, Congress, remains bleak like a moonless night. In many states, the party remains radar-less without an empowered state unit. With a top heavy structure providing no coherent leadership, Congress has islands of influence of local satraps. It doesn’t have any organised plan to counter BJP’s rampage. Congress was supposed to gain in Chandigarh, but fell by the wayside. In Maharashtra, BJP is making inroads in Congress’ deepest bastions. Punjab is its best shot in the next batch of elections, which will take place in 3-4 months. Yet the party looks wobbly, unsure of its next move. It has given BJP the breathing space to commit a few mistakes of its own without getting severely penalised. The BJP-SAD alliance is widely expected to lose Punjab and yet it managed to increase its numbers in the Chandigarh municipal polls. While it would be wrong to over-analyse the data, owing to the absence of AAP which didn’t take part in the elections, one thing is for sure. BJP-SAD is not a spent force in Punjab, and Congress and AAP can only ignore the ruling alliance at their own peril. In a border state like Punjab, where terrorism, drugs and counterfeit currency are big causes of concern, demonetization may even have a positive effect on voters as it is likely to crack down on these burning problems.Can BJP continue this momentum into the five state polls in 3 months time? A lot will depend on how quickly the system normalises post December 30. The PM asked for 50 days to get rid of black money. The citizens of India seem to have given its ‘pradhan sevak’ that grace period, but patience may run out soon.It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that demonetization hits a section of dedicated BJP voters badly— the trader community and the urban upper class. Yet PM Modi has used his courage of conviction to implement the scheme. Only the future will tell if he can upend all political calculations and end up with a new larger voting block, steadfastly supporting his decisions. That will be no less radical than the decision of demonetization itself.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>After supporting demonetization initially, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu on Tuesday appeared to be having a second thought saying this is not what they wished for and that the solution to problems due to the note ban remained elusive even after 40 days.”Demonetization was not our wish but it happened. More than 40 days after demonetization, there are still lot of problems and there appears to be no solution,” he told a workshop of Telugu Desam MPs, MLCs, MLAs and other leaders here.”It still remains a sensitive and complicated problem,” Chandrababu, who heads the 13-member central committee to look into demonetization issues, observed.
ALSO READ 6 reasons why, despite being criticised, demonetization has failed to halt BJP’s victory march”I am spending two hours daily to find out how to ease the problems caused by demonetization. I am breaking my head daily but we are unable to find a solution to this problem,” he said.It was Chandrababu who had been a strong proponent of ban on high denomination currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1000. In fact, he had written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on October 12 reiterating his demand.
ALSO READ Whoever planted the idea of demonetization didn’t know elementary economics: Chidambaram Hours after the Prime Minister came out with the demonetization announcement, the Telugu Desam Party started claiming credit saying it was a “victory for Chandrababu” over his fight on corruption.”This is a moral victory for the TDP,” it said in posts on Facebook and Twitter.
ALSO READ Global rating agency Crisil gives thumbs up to demonetization, predicts lasting economic benefits”Prime Minister Modi may have taken the decision now but Chandrababu had these thoughts even when he was in the opposition (2004-14). He had been fighting for scrapping of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes since then,” the TDP said in a Facebook post.The party media cell dug out newspaper clippings dating back to June 2013 when Chandrababu raised the demand for the first time.But as people started facing trouble in exchanging the scrapped notes as well as in withdrawing cash from their accounts, Chandrababu seemed to change his tone and started making critical remarks about the Centre’s move, particularly the introduction of Rs 2000 notes.”We could resolve the ‘August crisis’ (an internal party coup dating back to 1984) in 30 days but this (demonetization) still persists,” he said.He said banks were “not prepared” for a transition to digital economy.”They are unable to even register banking correspondents,” he added.Unless there were remedial measures, people’s woes would continue in the long-term, Chandrababu warned.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu on Tuesday said demonetization was not what they wished for, adding he was still breaking his head as a solution to the ongoing (currency) crisis remained elusive.”Demonetization was not our wish but it happened. More than 40 days after demonetization, there are still a lot of problems but yet there appears to be no solution,” Chandrababu said addressing a workshop of Telugu Desam MPs, MLCs, MLAs and other leaders here today. “It still remains a sensitive and complicated problem,” Chandrababu — who heads the 13-member central committee to look into demonetization issues — observed.It was Chandrababu who had been a strong proponent of ban on high denomination currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1000.In fact, he had written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on October 12 reiterating his demand. On November 9, hours after the Prime Minister came out with the demonetization announcement, the Telugu Desam Party started claiming credit saying it was a “victory for Chandrababu” over his fight on corruption. “This is a moral victory for the TDP,” it said on posts on Facebook and Twitter. Prime Minister Modi may have taken the decision now but Chandrababu had these thoughts even when he was in the opposition (2004-14). He had been fighting for scrapping of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes since then,” the TDP pointed in a Facebook post. The party media cell dug out newspaper clippings dated back to June 2013 when Chandrababu raised the demand for the first time.But as people started facing trouble in exchanging the scrapped notes as well as in withdrawing cash from their savings accounts, Chandrababu seemed to change his tone and started making critical remarks about the Centre s move, particularly the introduction of Rs 2000 notes. “I am spending two hours daily to ease the problems caused by demonetization. I am breaking my head daily but we are unable to find a solution to this problem,” the Chief Minister said today.”We could resolve the ‘August crisis’ (an internal party coup dating back to 1984) in 30 days but this (demonetization) still persists,” he pointed out.He said banks were “not prepared” for a transition to digital economy. “They are unable to even register banking correspondents,” he added.Unless there were remedial measures, people’s woes would continue in the long-term, Chandrababu warned.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Rejecting Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s allegations that opposition parties were trying to defend the dishonest and were running away from a debate as ‘absolutely wrong’, Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge on Tuesday said the former was not ready to address Parliament, because he did not have guts to participate in the debate.”This is absolutely wrong. Modiji himself failed to address parliament. Modiji speaks outside and not in parliament because there was pandemonium. If in the din, the Taxation Bill could be passed, the Disability Bill and supplementary demand were passed, then why did not Modiji make a statement? He was not ready, because he did not have guts to participate in the debate,” Kharge told ANI.”When Modiji declared demonetization on November 8, he should have given a statement in the House on November 16, but he did not. When he made the announcement outside parliament and made statements on TV, radio and for press, then why did not he give a statement in the House,” he asked, adding that the Prime Minister came to the House not for answering questions, but just to mark his presence.
ALSO READ Demonetization: Cash crunch to normalise by Febuary 2017, says reportJustifying the opposition’s stand in parliament, the Congress veteran said, “We demanded an adjournment motion for a debate under Rule 56, but that was denied. Then we said we are ready to discuss the issue under Rule 184, dropping the demand of an adjournment, but they were not ready for that. It entails voting, but despite their majority in the Lok Sabha, they denied. At the end, we said we are ready for a discussion under any rule, but they were not ready for even that.””He thinks he can speak anything outside parliament, because those are electoral stunts as he had said he would bring black money stashed in foreign nations and would give Rs. 15 lakh (to everybody), but later BJP president Amit Shah said those were political stunts. So, these stunts are their preparations for election in Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Goa and other states and that was why they did not want a discussion in the House,” Kharge added.
ALSO READ NDA govt did what Congress should have done in 1971: Narendra ModiAddressing his sixth “Parivartan Rally” in Kanpur on Monday, the Prime Minister hailed his demonetization move, saying it is aimed at curbing corruption and black money and to benefit the poor and honest citizens.Prime Minister Modi attacked the opposition for stalling proceedings during the winter session of parliament, alleging that parliament was not allowed to function as opposition parties were trying to defend the dishonest and were running away from a debate on the issue of corruption and black money.The Prime Minister said that during an all-party meeting convened before the winter session, he had suggested a debate on simultaneous elections to the Lok Sabha and state assemblies and donations to political parties.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>1. At least 12 dead, 48 injured after truck ploughs into crowd at Berlin Christmas marketA truck crashed into a Christmas market in Berlin in a suspected terrorist attack. Read more.2. Demonetization breathes life into ‘zombie’ accounts; Rs 2,000 crore deposited in 72,000 dormant accountsFinancial Intelligence Unit (FIU) data shows deposits of Rs 2,000 crore in 72,000 dormant accounts from November 8-25. Read more.3. Ankara: ‘Don’t forget Aleppo’, ‘Allahu Akbar’: Gunman shouted as he shoots Russian envoy Andrei KarlovShouting “Don’t forget Aleppo”! a Turkish policeman in a suit and tie fatally shot Russia’s ambassador to Turkey. Read more.4. I haven’t broken any bad habits: Priyanka Chopra spills the beansPriyanka Chopra spills secrets — from her favourite breakfast food to the television show she wants to be trapped in! Read more.5. IND vs ENG: Karun Nair’s day of 3 cheersRookie batsman gives a workout to statisticians as he makes his first entry in century column with 303*; India register their highest-ever innings total of 759/7 to dominate England on Day 4. Read more.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Congress hit back at Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the issue of transparency, telling him to disclose first how many hundreds of crores of rupees were deposited in BJP accounts in months preceding the demonetization before attacking other parties.”Prime Minister is a habitual offender when it comes to speaking on transparency and accountability. May I ask Modi Ji while you speak about transparency and accountability of the democratic process, why are you not making the accounts of BJP and its units and RSS public”, Congress chief spokesman Randeep Surjewala told reporters.He said that this would enable the country to know that like on the “pattern of your Bengal unit”, how many hundreds of crores of Rupees were deposited in Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes in BJP accounts all over the country in few months preceding the demonetization.”Why is Modiji not showing courage of conviction to disclose the details of properties purchased by BJP and RSS in the preceding months leading to demonetization”, Surjewala asked.He told the Prime Minister that unless and until he held himself accountable to the claims that he make, words will not do, it is action and intent that will prove his bonafides.At a public meeting in Kanpur, the Prime Minister earlier accused the Congress of always shying away from being accountable to the people and recalled a saying of then AICC Treasurer Sitaram Kesri to drive home the point.”Na khata, na bahi, jo Kesri kahe wahi sahi (neither accounts nor ledgers, only thing that matters is what is said by Kesri),” Modi said. Congress General Secretary Digvijay Singh in a letter to the Prime Minister sought to debunk his claims on transparency and accountability. He asked Modi why he was not ordering a probe into the leak in Panama papers and Bahama papers where those allegedly involved have been made brand ambassadors by the Prime Minister.He also wanted to know from the Prime Minister why his government was not acting fast on the issue of appointment of Lok Pal, the whistle blower act and benami properties.Besides, he asked the Prime Minister why he was not initiating action against BJP chief Amit Shah whose close aides are being accused of irregularities in the wake of demonetization.Singh in the letter and Surjewala at the briefing detailed the steps enlisted by Congress President Sonia Gandhi at the Burari plenary of the party way back in 2010 to usher in transparency and accountability.On the question on the proposal of the Election Commission to cleanse funding of political parties, Surjewala said Congress has always welcomed every move which would make the funding of election transparent, more accountable as also holds political parties accountable to the expenditures that they do including donations received by political parties.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>As many as 48.63 lakh workers in the unorganised sector in the national capital may become unemployed due to “faulty implementation of demonetization” and they have already started going back to their home states, Delhi Congress chief Ajay Maken claimed.A march will be held on December 24 from Jantar Mantar to Parliament House by Delhi Poorvanchal Congress, in association with Delhi Parvatiya Congress and Delhi South Indian Congress, to highlight the plight of migrant labourers due faulty implementation of demonetization, he said. “48.63 lakh unorganized/informal workforce in Delhi consist of first-generation migrant labour. After faulty implementation of demonetization, reverse migration has begun in Delhi,” Maken alleged. “Lakhs of labourers have already returned to their homes, and around 15,000 labourers are returning to their homes from Delhi every day, which is stalling development works in the national capital,” he claimed.The Delhi Congress chief said he had written a letter to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on December 9 to draw his attention towards this issue and had asked him to take steps to stop reverse migration of this informal workforce. Claiming that he has not received any reply from the Chief Minister, Maken said the Delhi Government has not taken any steps to implement his suggestion that Rs 5,000 be given to these labourers as monthly unemployment allowance, which is nearly 50% of minimum wages. “Major projects in Delhi have come to a standstill as labourers are not getting their daily wages due to the cash crunch. The daily earning of rickshaw pullers have also come down sharply.”If steps are not taken immediately to stop reverse migration of the informal workforce, it will take a long time for Delhi to come back to its normal routine,” he claimed.Quoting a survey on employment by the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO), Maken said as per the 68th Round, between 2011 and 2012, the working population of Delhi was 57.06 lakh. “The data of Directorate of Employment, Delhi Government reveals that the total number of workers in the organised sector was 8.43 lakh in 2009. This figure has remained almost consistent in the last one decade,” he said.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Dubbing demonetization as a ‘furzical (fake) strike’, Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leader Lalu Prasad Yadav on Sunday said after a meeting of various political parties, they will chalk out a future course of action against Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘big failure’.”The Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said before the parliamentary election that black money will come back and Rs.15 lakh will be deposited in every bank account, but nothing has happened. We can see that he has failed in every step,” Yadav told ANI.”Demonetization is a big failure of the Modi Government, and so, it is not a surgical strike on black money, but rather a ‘furzical’ strike,” he added.Speaking about the strategy to counter demonetization, Yadav told ANI, “After a meeting of various political parties, we will chalk out a future course of action against the Modi government.”The government’s decision to demonetize notes has drawn flak from all political parties.On Saturday, Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi said at a rally in Belgaum, Karnataka, “As there is a man-made disaster, similarly demonetization is a Modi- made disaster.”He further said that Prime Minister Modi had attacked the economy by announcing demonetization.”More than 100 people have died because of demonetization drive and PM Modi is responsible for it,” Rahul said, adding that the Modi government has been attacking the poor for the last two-and-a-half years.”Nothing will happen in 50 days. The Prime Minister will give your money to rich. Modi wants to waive off bank loans,” he added.National Congress Party (NCP) leader Sharad Pawar said “We went and met Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and other officials to request them to allow deposit of old notes in district banks but got no answer.””Later, we moved the Supreme Court, and, I am happy that the apex court has ordered district banks to accept old notes. Also new currency must be made available to district banks so that they can lend loans to farmers,” he added.”Now that the Kharif season is completed and soon the Rabi season would commence, banks would need enough currency to dispense loans. If the banks don’t have enough money to dispense, what the farmers will do, where will they go,” he added.Pawar further said that demonetization is an attempt to disrupt the entire channel of banking and the farmers would be the worst affected.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> RJD president Lalu Prasad on Saturday said demonetization would meet the fate of ‘Nasbandi’ of the Congress rule and announced protest across Bihar on December 28.During a day-long meeting of RJD MPs, ministers, legislators and office-bearers, Prasad and other leaders of the party highlighted people’s woes following the scrapping of Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 notes. Addressing the RJD leaders, Prasad criticised the move and said, “It will meet the fate of ‘nasbandi’ (forced sterilisation) during the Congress rule in the past.” Prasad and his party have been on the forefront of protest against the demonetization decision inside and outside Parliament.Several prominent RJD leaders had shared dais with TMC chief and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamafta Banerjee during her demonstration against demonetization in Patna on November 30, though Prasad himself was not present. Asked how he saw Nitish Kumar getting praise from Centre on demonetization, Prasad, whose RJD is a partner in the grand alliance government, said, “Nitish Kumar’s approach is similar to our’s…all of us are standing together against hardship caused to masses due to high-value currency invalidation.” Nitish Kumar and his party JD(U), which has supported demonetization, had kept away from Banerjee’s demonstration.Economist Mohan Guruswamy, who was advisor in the NDA government of Atal Bihari Vajpayee, was also invited to speak on adverse impact of demonetization. Guruswamy gave a detailed slide presentation with the help of data and charts to tell RJD leaders how demonetization would cause a drop of 2.5 per cent in the country’s GDP by the end of the current fiscal. In the meeting Prasad, Tejaswi Yadav, Abdul Bari Siddiqui, who is the finance minister in the Nitish Kumar government, and a host of senior leaders spke on the woes of poor people and farmers standing outside banks and ATMs for withdrawal of cash. Prasad said, “After the December-28 dharna, leaders of all the parties, national as well regional, would be invited to a rally later in Patna.” He said the date of the rally would be announced later.Making a scathing attack at the Prime Minister, the RJD chief said “after seeing that demonetization is failing, the PM has shifted the issue now and is talking about cashless, PayTm.” “On the one hand the PM talks of going ahead of China and on the another hand he is favouring a company (PayTm) in which the Chinese have a major share,” he said. During over half-an-hour of presentation, Guruswamy said though former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had predicted a fall of two per cent in the GDP due to demonetization, his view is that the decline would amount to about 2.5 per cent by the end of the financial year.Guruswamy claimed, “22 crore daily workers have been adversely affected by the demonetization.” He said of the total amount of unaccounted money, only 4 per cent is in the form of cash while major chunk of 46 per cent is invested in land and building, 26 per cent in jewellery and 24 per cent is parked abroad. “Modi is after only this 4 per cent of the black money which is in the form of cash which could not bear any result other than causing miseries to common people, especially the daily wagers,” he added.”Approximately Rs 30 crore of black money is expected to be unearthed through the demonetization. A total of Rs 42,000 crore would be spent in reprinting this volume of scrapped notes,” Guruswamy, who taught Economics at Harvard University, said. Handing over a pamphlet with views of Guruswamy on note scrapping, Prasad told RJD workers to hold “jan jagran” (public awareness meeting) at grassroots level from December 20-26 to make them aware of truth of demonetization.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Speaking in Goa Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi hit out at PM Modi’s demonetization scheme. He said at a rally that 1% of the rich people have acquired 60% of the country’s money. He was quoted saying by ANI: “In the last 2 and half years, 1% rich people have acquired 60% of country’s money.” He further said: “All cash is not black money & all black money is not cash. Demonetization has targeted the poor, the cash economy of our country. Cong wants to eradicate corruption from country; If NDA govt wants to take a step against it, party will give its 100% support. But demonetization drama isn’t fight against corruption, black money. It’s an attack on India’s 99% honest people , cash economy, weak people.” He further said: “1% super-rich people usurped Rs 8 lakh crore from India’s banks. When they didn’t return money, you(Centre) called it non-performing asset.” He added: “Nov 8 ko khade hote hain jaise Obamaji khade hote hai aur kaha,”jo jebh mein paisa hai Hindustan k gareeb logon woh ab kagaz ho gye (On November 8, he stood up like Obama and said: “The money in poor people’s pockets is now paper.)He added: “Yeh surgical strike nahi thi yeh Hindustan ke imaandar logon pe “firebombing” thi (This wasn’t a surgical strike on India’s honest people, this was a firebombing.)”He added: “In last 2.5 years, PM Modi waived off Rs 1,10,000 crore of these people. After demonetization, he waived off Vijay Mallya’s Rs 1200 crore. Demonetization is all about “gareebon se paisa kheechon, ameeron ko paisa seechon.”Earlier, a Congress delegation today met Prime Minister Narendra Modi to highlight the plight of farmers in the country and demanded a loan waiver for them. During the meeting, which came in the backdrop of Gandhi’s fierce attack on the Prime Minister over demonetisation, top Congress leaders presented a memorandum to Modi on demands of farmers including loan waiver, reducing power bills to half and remunerative MSP for farm produce.The delegation included Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad, Leader of Congress in Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge, deputy leaders in both Houses Anand Sharma and Jyotiraditya Scindia, Punjab Congress chief Amarinder Singh and UP Congress chief Raj Babbar.After the meeting, the Congress Vice President said that Modi heard them patiently but did not commit anything.”We, Congress party delegation, met Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the plight of farmers of this country. Every single day, a farmer is committing suicide in Punjab. Farmers are committing suicide all over the country.”The government has removed the import duty on wheat.This is a devastating blow. So we went to the Prime Minister to request him on behalf of farmers of this country to waive their loans,” he told reporters.He said the Prime Minister accepted that the situation of farmers is serious but did not say anything on loan waiver.Sources said the Prime Minister gave the delegation a patient hearing and told Rahul Gandhi to “keep meeting him”.Gandhi has been targeting the Prime Minister often, with his latest offensive being on demonetisation. He claimed on Wednesday that he had information about alleged “personal corruption” of the Prime Minister, but the BJP dismissed it as a “joke”.Gandhi had raised the farmers issue during his recent Deoria to Delhi yatra in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh. The Congress has collected over 2 crore “Kisan maang patras” from across Uttar Pradesh and over 34 lakh from Punjab which also goes to polls early next year.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>1. Local Arunachal Congress leaders ‘astonished’ by corruption charges against Kiren RijijuUnion Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju, who is at the centre of a controversy for having sought release of payments for contractors named in a vigilance probe, said on Thursday that the Congress Party has made a grave mistake by raising their finger against him, and therefore, they will have to pay the price for their lifetime. Read more here.2. Demonetization: Mamata meets RBI governor Urjit Patel, complains about ‘political discrimination amongst states’Amidst protests by Trinamool Congress against demonetization, RBI Governor Urjit Patel met Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee during which she expressed concern over hardship faced by people and “political discrimination amongst states”. Read more here.3. Aleppo: Rebel evacuation under way after ceasefire dealAn operation to evacuate thousands of civilians and fighters from the last rebel bastion in Aleppo was under way on Thursday, part of a ceasefire deal that would end years of fighting for the city and mark a major victory for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Read more here.4. Demonetization | 90% ATMs recaliberated, focus on printing Rs 500 notes: Shaktikanta DasEconomic Affairs secretary Shaktikanta Das stated that the total number of notes in lower denominations of Rs 100 and below supplied in the last five weeks is three times of what the Reserve Bank of India supplies in a year. Read more here.5. SC threatens perjury, contempt proceedings against BCCI President Anurag ThakurThe court reminded the BCCI top brass that Thakur as President of the board had asked for a letter from ICC CEO Dave Richardson that the appointment of a CAG nominee in the cricket body would compromise with autonomy and amount to government interference. Read more here.
Thu, 15 Dec 2016-03:23pm , Pulwama , ANI
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> In yet another incident of robbery, the terrorists looted Rs 11 lakh from Jammu and Kashmir Bank’s Ratnipora branch here on Wednesday.A similar incident had taken place earlier on December 8 when unidentified men targeted the same bank’s branch in Pulwama, looting Rs 13.38 lakh.Several cases of bank loot have come to the fore in the state post the demonetization move announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on November 8.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief Amit Shah will have a meeting with his party’s national office bearers in the national capital on ThursdayShah and other leaders are expected to discuss strategy for the upcoming assembly elections with particular focus on the politically crucial Uttar Pradesh.The meeting is also expected to discuss the BJP’s strategy to communicate to people about the benefits of demonetization.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Meghalaya Chief Minister Mukul Sangma on Wednesday accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of being a “brand ambassador” of corporate houses promoting their businesses through the demonetization exercise.”I have analysed it (demonetization) and I have seen that the main agenda of this government and the Prime Minister is not to fight corruption or black money or so-called funding of terrorist organisation. The whole agenda now seems to be in promoting some particular business benefiting some limited corporate houses,” Sangma told reporters here.”I have not seen anybody in the world where a Prime Minister starts acting as a brand ambassador for products monopolised by a few corporate houses,” he said, referring to Modi for being part of advertisements of some private companies, which he did not name.
ALSO READ CISF has seized Rs 70 cr cash, 170 kg gold from airports post demonetization”This is something which is not in sync with the rhetoric.What you see today is he (Modi) was in a hurry to please those business houses and this is how I can interpret,” Sangma said.The Chief Minister criticised the demonetization move saying it had “completely dislocated the whole momentum of economic activities at all levels. This (demonetization) has been done without due diligence and the worst hit are the marginalised farmers.””They (farmers) are not finding buyers because cash is not there. There is a short circulation of cash. With the Rs 2,000 notes, both the buyer and seller are equally helpless,” he added.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Demonetization-induced cash crunch has left in the lurch a large section of society, including farmers, labourers and small shopkeepers, in Yavatmal, known as ground zero of suicides by farmers. The recall of Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 notes has affected the usual business in weekly markets as well as agricultural produce marketing committees (APMCs) in the district, besides the bullock market.The labourers are bearing the brunt as they are getting paid only in Rs 2,000 notes due to paucity of Rs 500 and Rs 100 tenders. The labourers are finding it difficult to manage their daily expenses as shopkeepers are turning them away citing lack of loose change. “How will we feed our children?,” asked Ramu Madavi, a local shopkeeper.Same is the ordeal of scrap merchants, vegetable vendors and other small sellers. Farmers in the weekly bullock market have a similar story to narrate. “Bullocks are brought from distant places on hired vehicles and if they are not sold, how can we pay the fare?” questioned Vinod Kapse.A farmer, Vilas Pande, said “I have come to buy a pair of bullocks. I agreed to buy one for the price mutually accepted by the owner and me. But when I said, I would pay the price through a bank cheque, he refused saying give me Rs 10,000 less but it should be in hard cash.” A local vendor said, “vegetables are perishing for want of buyers.”
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>“I have done my calculations. Your problems will be eased post December 30”, assured PM Modi at a rally in Gujarat. This deadline of things going back to normal is probably the only thing Modi has kept constant since the demonetization decision was announced on November 8. “Give me 50 days and the problem of black money will be solved,” was his impassioned plea. Since then, the goalpost of demonetization has been largely shifted to promoting cashless economy, but PM Modi runs the risk of a serious credibility loss by sticking to the December-end deadline of easing all pains owing to cash crunch.According to Reuters estimates, it will take at least three months to replenish the 86% volume of Indian currency that were made invalid post demonetization. While the withdrawal limit for banks per week is Rs 24,000 per account, most banks are unwilling to give an amount greater than Rs 10,000 due to lack of cash. The problem continues unabated in varying degrees across the country. Even the Supreme Court has asked for the Centre’s reply in this matter. While the Attorney General may believe ATM queues have shortened considerably, the picture from different parts of the country are in stark contrast. IIP data for October (pre-demonetization) shows contraction owing to weak manufacturing numbers and is likely to get only worse. Most rating agencies have cut India’s GDP growth rate owing to low consumption.The likes of Larry Summers, Manmohan Singh and Kaushik Basu have warned of a cascading effect of this economic turbulence with looming fears of job losses and slowdown. The only glimmer of hope comes from Morgan Stanley which believes India’s economy will be back on track in April, 2017. Amidst all these grim predictions, one wonders whether PM Modi is guided by false hope or a wrong set of advisors about the possible economic fallout and the severity and longevity of it. The hope is to trust that PM Modi has the rare insight which many of the pre-eminent economists are missing. Even his Finance Minister believes it will be a couple of quarters before the economy picks up. A note ban of this extent in an economy like India has never been done. Hence, there is no available data or model to properly estimate the extent of demonetization. One also can’t ignore that many of the eminent economists failed to predict the 2008 crisis. So, Modi may still beat the odds. PM Modi’s December 30 deadline is based on two promises. One is that people’s hardship would be eased beyond that and second, these 50 days will be a body blow to black money racketeers. Whether hardship has eased will be judged by the voting public by their personal experiences. So far, the government hasn’t promised publication of tangible statistics, that will reveal the amount of black money tracked in this entire exercise. PM Modi has anchored this audacious demonetization scheme using his personal charisma and integrity to the hilt. People have been largely appreciative, despite suffering hardships. The schadenfreude of the rich suffering is too alluring for the poor and the middle class to let go off. But even a successful marketing campaign has its limitation and expiry date. The unquestioned support towards demonetization among a large section of population has already started to waver, seeing the innumerable flip flops by the RBI and Finance Ministry, looking to implement a new rule everyday. But post December 30, people will like to see some actual results to convince themselves that all these countless hours of lining up for cash were worth something.The entire digital push is commendable, but as an FT commentator says, was the entire process too much, too soon? A tight schedule for changing the fundamentals in a country as big as India looks daunting if not impossible. The amount of cash seizures in new notes (close to Rs 100 crore) means there is a systemic rot in the banking system and clearly a nexus exists between unholy bankers and traders. The government has to urgently plug the loopholes or else the entire mission behind demonetization will go to waste. The message currently being received is the big fishes are getting away and the lesser mortals are facing the brunt. PM Modi may have sold the dream well, but will the gullible mass get a rude reality shock will only be known in the New Year. And BJP may just face the wrath in the elections. PM Modi’s high stakes gamble is increasingly looking shaky.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Continuing to hit out at the BJP over demonetization, Banerjee claimed that the ‘most corrupt people were talking about removing corruption’. She also claimed that demonetization meant ‘complete demolition of the Indian economy’.The TMC supremo wrote on Twitter: “The most corrupt people are talking about removing corruption. #Demonetization done only to help Modi babu and his close associates. Demonetization has meant complete demolition of the Indian economy. The arrogant and destructive attitude of this govt. is trying to destroy the world’s largest democracy.”The war of words between TMC and BJP over Mamata Banerjee’s hard stance against demonetization escalated on Sunday. BJP West Bengal President Dilip Ghosh had earlier claimed that Mamata Banerjee had ‘lost her mind’ because she lost ‘hundreds of crores’ due to demonetization. Continuing the attack, he told ANI on Sunday: “Jab woh Delhi mei natak kar rahi thi,hum chahte to unka baal pakad ke nikal sakte the;hamari Police hai wahan. Par hum aisa nahi karte. Ek CM iss tarah ke shabd PM ke liye istemal karti hain vo theek nahi hai.” (When Mamata was protesting Delhi, we could’ve dragged her by the hair, the Delhi police is ours. But we didn’t do it. A CM speaking like that about the PM is not right.)Hitting out at Ghosh’s comments, TMC’s Derek O’Brien said: “New low in politics, 3rd class politics; made dangerous, threatening, false & personal allegations against Mamata Banerjee.” Earlier, Ghosh had said Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee has lost her mind after the demonetization drive and that was the reason behind her recent visits to Delhi and Patna.Speaking at a meeting of the party’s youth wing held at Paschim Medinipore district’s Jhargram yesterday, Ghosh said Banerjee has lost her mind and is crying for losing thousand of crores of rupees in the recent demonetization of higher currency notes.”…That was why she (Banerjee) is visiting New Delhi and Patna. And failing to achieve anything, she is sitting in Nabanna (Secretariat). We had thought that she will ultimately jump in the Ganges… this person (Banerjee) has lost her mind and we are not ready to see her insanity… the state’s people have realised their mistake of bringing in the change in West Bengal,” Ghosh said.Reacting sharply to Ghosh’s statement, the TMC said that after failing to fight Banerjee on her stand on demonetization, the BJP has started spewing “dangerous personal threats to the Bengal CM”.”The BJP cannot fight Mamata Banerjee on policy, good governance and her principled stand on demonetization on behalf of millions who are affected,” the statement released by TMC said. “BJP is desperate to silence the voice of the opposition. So how low do they stoop’ The Bengal BJP president spews deeply dangerous, threatening, abusive and completely false personal statements against her. A new low in politics,” it said.A day earlier Mamata Banerjee had claimed that PM Modi had no solution for the hardships of people due to demonetization. ‘Modi babu knows that #DeMonetisation now derailed. Except giving bhashan, he has no solution,’ Mamata tweeted.Prime Minister Modi had made an appeal to the opposition to help inform the masses that they do not need to stand in queue and can use mobile banking for cash transactions.”From the land of Mahatma Gandhi and Sardar Patel I want to share something with my friends in the opposition. Yes, during elections we have a lot of heated debates. But we all call for increased voter turnout. Likewise, yes, you can oppose me but do teach people about banking, using technology for financial transactions,” he said while addressing the farmers at a rally in Gujarat’s Deesa.The Trinamool Congress (TMC) supremo who from the beginning opposed the demonetization and demanded its roll back, earlier on Thursday sharpened her attack on the Prime Minister and said the latter must resign because the move has led to “economic disaster” in the country and he has “no moral right” to continue.Alleging the country’s growth and business have been hit due to demonetization, she said the Prime Minister “doesn’t trust” anyone and he “doesn’t understand” what is good for the country.She has also questioned the motives behind the government’s move, alleging that nobody but the Prime Minister and his aides have benefited from the scheme.With inputs from agencies
As the four occupants, including a woman, failed to give any satisfactory explanation about the source of cash in their possession, they have been detained and brought to police station. <!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Police on Friday seized Rs 76 lakh cash in denomination of Rs 2,000 from four persons in Surat and detained them as they failed to explain source of the money.This morning, police intercepted a car with Maharashtra registration near Classic Complex in Sachin GIDC area and during the search found 38 bundles of the Rs 2,000 tender, with total face value of Rs 76 lakh, Surat Police said in a statement. “As the four occupants, including a woman, failed to give any satisfactory explanation about the source of cash in their possession, they have been detained and brought to police station,” it said.They have been identified as Dipti Patel (30), a resident of Navsari, Girish Patel (45), a resident of Valsad, Arun Amrutar (58) and Rann Kumar Singh (46), both hailing from Nashik in Maharashtra. “We have informed the Income Tax department about the seizure. We will hand the four persons to I-T for further questioning,” said ACP and Surat Police PRO Nita Desai.
ALSO READ Demonetization: Gang robs businessman of Rs 58 lakh in new notes, held
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi accused the government on Friday of not allowing him to speak in Parliament on demonetization, which he dubbed as the “biggest scam”, and said he would reveal in the House what was behind the move to scrap high denomination notes.Speaking to reporters outside Parliament, Gandhi said that his party wants debate on demonetization so that the truth can come to the fore, but the government is running away from it. The Congress Vice President said that when he gets a chance to speak about demonetization in the House, “the Prime Minister will not be able to even sit there”.”The Prime Minister is giving speeches across the country but is afraid of coming to the Lok Sabha and is not willing to sit there,” Gandhi said and asked what could be the reason for this “nervousness”. “Demonetization is the biggest scam in the history of India…. I want to speak in Lok Sabha. I will tell everything there,” Gandhi said and accused the government of not allowing him to speak in the House on the issue.The Congress leader was speaking after his party said in Lok Sabha that it was ready to debate the issue but the government demanded that it should first apologise to the people of the country for stalling Parliament proceedings for 16 days, leading to uproar and adjournment of the House.Gandhi said initially the Government spoke about black-money, then moved to counterfeit currency and then again to a cashless society campaign. He said, “I want to tell about the the biggest scam committed by Narendra Modi single handedly” and present the “voice of people, specially poor, who have suffered due to this move”.He said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi should come to the House so that it can be discussed “what demonetization is, who has benefited from this decision is and what it means for whom”. He added that the government had initially proposed debate on demonetization to which his party agreed but then the government backtracked. “If they allow me to speak in Parliament, you will see an earthquake will happen,” Gandhi told reporters.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>For God’s sake, do your job: President blasts MPs for stalling ParliamentIn a stinging attack on the opposition over Parliamentary paralysis, President Pranab Mukherjee on Thursday said the House is not a place for dharna and disruption which amounts to “gagging of majority” by the minority. Read more here.Kolkata: FBI team arrives to interrogate Islamic State operative MusaA seven-member team of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the domestic intelligence and security service of the United States, have arrived in West Bengal to interrogate ISIS operative Musa. Read the DNA exclusive story here. Must ensure #IndiaDefeatsBlackMoney, short-term pain will pave way for long-term gains: PM ModiAmid ongoing protests from the Opposition parties, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said that the government’s decision of demonetization had several gains and that people must ensure that India defeats black money. Read more here. Demonetization: IT department seizes Rs 90 crore cash, 100 kg gold from Chennai jewellersSeveral Chennai-based jewellers were raided by the Income Tax department on Thursday, from whom Rs 90 crore and 100 kg gold have been seized. Read more here.30 days post demonetization: Arun Jaitley announces slew of incentives to promote cashless transactions30 days after PM Modi announced the decision to demonetize Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announced a slew of incentives to go cashless and bring in an era of digital transactions. Read more here.The Raees – Kaabil clash can’t sour my relationship with Shah Rukh: Rakesh Roshan speaks up!Despite the fact that his film Kaabil and SRK’s Raees are going head to head against each other next January, Rakesh Roshan tells DNA that there’s no bad blood. Read more here.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Amid ongoing protests from the Opposition parties, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said that the government’s decision of demonetization had several gains and that people must ensure that India defeats black money.”The Government’s decision has several gains for farmers, traders, labourers, who are the economic backbone of our nation. I always said that the government’s measure will bring a degree of inconvenience but this short term pain will pave way for long term gains,” said Modi in a series of tweets.Stating that no longer will the progress and prosperity of rural India be curtailed by corruption and black money, Modi added, “Our villages must get their due. We also have a historic opportunity to embrace increased cashless payments and integrate latest technology in economic transactions.”Calling youngsters the agent of change, Modi said, “My young friends, you are agents of change who will make India corruption free and ensure more cashless transactions.””Together, we must ensure #IndiaDefeatsBlackMoney. This will empower the poor, neo-middle class, middle class & benefit future generations,” he added.Earlier in the day, Opposition leaders observed a ‘Black Day’ in Parliament premises to mark one month of the announcement of demonetization with Rahul Gandhi launching a scathing attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, saying his “foolish decision” had “devastated” the country.Leading the protest, Gandhi accused Modi of shying away from having a discussion on the issue in Parliament, but stressed that opposition parties will “not let him run away” from both Houses, where “everything will become clear” once the Prime Minister takes part in the debate.”The Prime Minister took this so-called bold decision. The bold decision can also be a foolish decision. And this was a foolish decision, it has devastated the country. More than 100 people have died. Farmers, fishermen, daily wage earners have been hit hard,” Rahul said.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Targetting Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the issue of demonetization, Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi on Thursday described it as foolish, rather than a bold decision. Gandhi said the decision has been implemented without consideration.”The assessment is that, it is a disaster. It has devastated the poor, farmers and daily wage workers. We want to have a discussion. We want a vote, government doesn’t. How can it be a bold decision. It is a foolish decision taken without any due consideration,” he said.Claiming that Prime Minister Modi has ‘changed his narrative’ on demonetization, Gandhi said, “Prime Minister Modi started by saying it is against black money, now the talk of black money is vanished. Then, he went to terrorism. After the terrorists were caught with the new notes, he went to counterfeit currency and later cashless economy. So, basically he is running.”
ALSO READ Nation still facing problems courtesy ‘monumental mismanagement’: Congress on demonetization”PM Modi is running away, if he comes to the House for a debate, we won’t let him run. He (PM Modi) is laughing, having a nice time while the people of the country are suffering. The idea behind a cashless economy is that a few people must get maximum benefits from these transactions, this has damaged the nation,” he added.Further attacking Prime Minister Modi, he said, “If I am allowed to speak in the Lok Sabha, I will show to all how Paytm means ‘Pay to Modi.”
ALSO READ Demonetization: Foreign govts unhappy over cash crunch, may take reciprocal measures When asked about the disruption in parliament, Rahul said the responsibility of running the House is with the government and the Speaker, not the opposition.With the opposition observing Black Day to vent their ire over the existing problems post completion of one month of demonetization, the government today cornered the Gandhi family, saying those questioning the ruling dispensation are the ones supporting the black money holders.
ALSO READ Low growth forecast mainly due to weak Q2 growth, not demonetization: RBIUnion Information and Broadcasting Minister M. Venkaiah Naidu said the opposition is not observing a Black Day, but they are voicing their support for black money holders.Taking a dig at the Congress, he added, “Gandhi ji gave call for Satyagrah to see that victory of truth prevails. What are so-called namesakes of Gandhis doing.”Union Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar, echoing similar sentiments, alleged that the opposition protest was aimed at garnering media space.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Monday adjourned hearing of the demonetization matter till December 9.The apex court was about to hear the case against demonetization, but decided to defer it to December 9.Earlier, the top court had adjourned the matter on December 2 because of problems faced by cooperative banks.Chief Justice of India TS Thakur has asked the government to see if something can be done. “People are suffering, it is a serious problem.” he had said then.The Centre had submitted an affidavit last week on the demonetization move in the Supreme Court, saying it is an attempt to unearth black money stashed over the last seven decades.Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi said that the Centre had filed a reply in the Supreme Court in compliance with the top court’s earlier order on the issue.The Centre in its affidavit told the apex court that demonetization is a step to reduce ratio of cash transactions, adding the objective is to unearth illegal parallel economy.Attorney General Rohatgi had earlier filed a transfer petition before the Supreme Court seeking a stay on all pending pleas against demonetization.The apex court had on November 18 refused to put a stay on hearings in various High Courts and lower courts related to the demonetization of Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000 currency notes.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court will hear the demonetization matter on Monday. The apex court had earlier on December 2 adjourned the matter because of problems faced by cooperative banks.Chief Justice of India TS Thakur has asked the government to see if something can be done. “People are suffering, it is a serious problem,” he said.The Centre had submitted an affidavit last week on the demonetization move in the Supreme Court, saying it is an attempt to unearth black money stashed over the last seven decades. Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi said that the Centre had filed a reply in the Supreme Court in compliance with the top court’s earlier order on the issue.The Centre in its affidavit told the apex court that demonetization is a step to reduce ratio of cash transactions, adding the objective is to unearth illegal parallel economy.Attorney General Rohatgi had earlier filed a transfer petition before the Supreme Court seeking a stay on all pending pleas against demonetization.The apex court had on November 18 refused to put a stay on hearings in various High Courts and lower courts related to the demonetization of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes.
Sun, 4 Dec 2016-10:58pm , Barasat , PTI
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Thousands of scrapped 1,000 rupee notes were found in a sack amounting to several lakhs at Rajarhat in North 24 Parganas district on Sunday morning.A senior police officer said the notes were torn and dumped near a playground.The persons behind the act could not be identified, he said.Similar incidents had been reported from several parts of the state as well as from rest of the country since Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the demonetization move on November 8 night.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Yoga guru Baba Ramdev, considered a close confidant of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on Saturday lauded West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, saying that she had enough credential to become Prime Minister.”There should not be any question regarding her credibility in politics. If son of a chai-wala could become Prime Minister, Mamataji could also become Prime Minister,” Ramdev told reporters.”In politics, Mamataji is the symbol of honesty and simplicity. I love her simplicity. She wears chappals and ordinary saris. I believe she does not have black money,” he said. “Once during my visit to West Bengal, when Left Front was in power, I had said the Leftists should go and Mamataji should come to power. And exactly it happened thereafter,” he said.Despite Banerjee’s staunch opposition to demonetization, which he supports, Ramdev appeared soft on her when he said the TMC supremo was actually against the procedure by which the move was being implemented.”I think she is not opposed to the demonetization move per se. But I feel she is not happy the way it was implemented”, Ramdev said at the Infocom seminar here.The yoga guru-cum-entrepreneur said, “I had planted the seeds of demonetization. I continued the movement from 2009 to 2014 and asked the government to withdraw Rs 500 and Rs 1000 currency notes as it was root cause of corruption, black money generation and terror and militant funding”. Now with demonetization, black money generation, corruption and terror funding had stopped totally, he said at the seminar.”The common people is getting inconvenienced due to cash crisis. But none is complaining against this,” he said. However, Ramdev said he believed that total cashless system could not be possible immediately and it would take time i.e. atleast six months.Praising Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the move, he sarcastically said that former PM Manmohan Singh, who had never spoken a word on any issue, had actually spoken now on the issue.”This is the effect of demonetization you see,” he quipped. Ramdev called on West Bengal Governor K N Tripathi at Raj Bhavan and termed it as ‘a courtesy call’.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>TMC supremo and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is not against demonetization per se, but the way it is being implemented, Yoga guru Baba Ramdev said on Saturday. “I praise Mamata Banerjee because she is very simple and stays in a cottage and wears hawai chappals. I think she is not opposed to the demonetization move per se. But I feel she is not happy the way it was implemented,” he said at the Infocom seminar here. Banerjee has been most vocal among opposition parties against demonetization and held protest meetings in Delhi, Patna and Luckhow.The Yoga guru-cum-entrepreneur said, “I had planted the seeds of demonetization. I continued the movement from 2009 to 2014 and asked the government to withdraw Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes as it was the root cause of corruption, black money, terror and militant funding”. Now with demonetization, black money generation, corruption and terror funding had stopped totally, he claimed.”The common people is getting inconvenienced due to cash crisis. But none is complaining against this,” he said.Praising Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the move, Ramdev sarcastically said former PM Manmohan Singh, who had never spoken a word on any issue, had actually spoken now on the issue.”This is the effect of demonetization you see,” he quipped.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a message to those criticising note ban, Union Home Minsiter Rajnath Singh on Friday said they should show patience for the 50-day period as the decision has been taken keeping national interest in mind and the situation will normalise after that.”Those criticising note ban must exercise patience for at least the 50-day period as the step has been taken in national interest to fight black money and corruption,” he said. Prime Minister Narendra Modi while announcing the demonetization decision on November 8 had said there will be some inconvenience to people for the initial 50-day period after which the situation will ease out. Singh was talking to media persons here on the sidelines of a function where he laid foundation stone of several railway projects.The Home Minister said the source of money supply will dry up, choking funding for terrorists and Maoists. Besides, the demonetization decision will bridge the gap between the rich and the poor, he said.Opposition parties have locked horns with the government over the issue of demonetization of high-value currencies with Parliament witnessing a virtual washout since the Winter Session began on November 16.Singh, who represents Lucknow constituency in Lok Sabha, said there should be no politics over development projects in the Uttar Pradesh.Observing that metro services will soon begin in Lucknow, he said whatever work he was doing for development of Lucknow, was dedicated to former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, who was also an MP from the state capital till 2009 before retiring from active politics. His remarks came a day after Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav flagged-off the trial run of Lucknow Metro in the state capital.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court will hear all pleas, including the transfer petition filed by the Centre on the demonetization of Rs. 500 and Rs. 1000 currency notes today.The Centre had submitted an affidavit last week on the demonetization move in the Supreme Court, saying it is an attempt to unearth black money stashed over the last seven decades.Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi said that the Centre had filed a reply in the Supreme Court in compliance with the top court’s earlier order on the issue.”We have filed the report starting from the initiation of SIT and all other issues which could be the affect of demonetization process,” Rohtagi told ANI.The Centre in its affidavit told the apex court that demonetization is a step to reduce ratio of cash transactions, adding the objective is to unearth illegal parallel economy.”Earlier, we constituted SIT to curb black money, amended Benami Act. The people might have to face some inconveniences. Re-calibration of ATMs is in full swing. Crores of fake currency notes have became useless. Funding of terror groups has been stopped,” said the affidavit.Attorney General Rohatgi had earlier filed a transfer petition before the Supreme Court seeking a stay on all pending pleas against demonetization. The Supreme Court had on November 18 refused to put a stay on hearings in various High Courts and lower courts related to the demonetizationof Rs. 500 and Rs. 1000 currency notes.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The first meeting of the panel of Chief Ministers set up by the Centre to suggest measures to minimize the inconvenience to the people post the demonetization drive will be held on December 2 under the chairmanship of Andhra Pradesh’s N Chandrababu Naidu.Sources said the Chief Ministers of Tripura, Madhya Pradesh, Puducherry and Bihar will also be present in the meeting. In order to blunt the opposition on note ban, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley yesterday held talks with Naidu and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. The Central Government yesterday decided to form a sub-committee of Chief Ministers to deal with the demonetization issue.This come as a united opposition is leaving no stone unturned in taking potshots at the government post the decision. Demanding that this decision should be rolled back for not being implemented properly, the opposition parties have also alleged that this exposed the ‘anti-poor’ stand of Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government as the general public is the worst hit.So far, only two Chief Ministers Bihar’s Nitish Kumar and Odisha’s Naveen Patnaik – have voiced their support for the Centre. Nitish has said he supported the currency ban as he is ‘convinced’ that it would help in the fight against black money while Patnaik has praised the move as a bold step. The ruling BJP at the Centre is also facing the wrath of its alliance partners as the Shiv Sena has alleged that the implementation of demonetization has not been done in an appropriate manner and said it is not only ‘one party’s monopoly’ to end corruption.The government has recommended the use of cashless methods of payment not only to tide over the cash shortage being experienced by people due to demonetization but also to curb corruption and generation of black money in the future.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Live | Demonetization: PM Modi will speak in Parliament if debate takes place says BJP For the 8th straight day, Opposition stalled Parliament over demonetizationtoday, even as the government sought to break the logjam by promising that Prime Minister Narendra Modi will speak on the issue if a debate takes place. Read more hereWar on black money: 50% tax on unaccounted deposits, 85% tax if caughtProviding a window to black money holders, the government on Monday proposed to levy a total tax, penalty and surcharge of 50 % on the amount deposited post demonetization while higher taxes and stiffer penalty of up to 85 % await those who don’t disclose but are caught. Read more here Punjab jailbreak: Mastermind Parminder sent to 14-day judicial custodyParminder Singh, mastermind of the Nabha jailbreak in which Khalistani terrorist Harminder Singh alias Mintoo and four others escaped, was sent to 14-day judicial remand. Read more hereIndia vs England: Spinners torment visitors with bat and ballRavindra Jadeja led India’s strong lower-order batting display with a career-best 90 before spin partner Ravichandran Ashwin wrecked England’s top order to put the hosts firmly in charge of the third test on Monday. Read more here ‘Stay Hungry Stay Foolish is a Karva Chauth guide’: Twitter savages Shilpa Shetty for misinterpreting Animal FarmActress Shilpa Shetty has been trolled on Twitter after she misinterpreted George Orwell’s “Animal Farm”. Read more here
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a shocking incident, a resident of Aligarh has allegedly got himself sterilized so that his family could come out of its cash crunch post demonetization of high-value currency notes. Puran Sharma, a daily wager, couldn’t afford a daily meal for his family after the demonetization drive and got sterilized at a nearby camp in return for monetary compensation. “I was very tired because of this demonetization, wasn’t getting money. From somewhere, I heard that monetary compensation is being given for getting sterilized. So, I went there and got it done,” said Puran Singh.Aligarh’s Chief Medical Officer Dr. Rupendra Goyal, however, narrated a different story altogether.Dr Goyal said Puran came to the sterilization camp organised in Khair with his wife. As his wife couldn’t be sterilized due to her poor health, the doctors on duty persuaded him to undergo the operation as part of the government’s family planning programme. “He came with his wife and was willing to sterilize his wife. But as she is deaf and dumb, we refused to do so,” said a doctor.Puran’s father claims that many people in the village undergo sterilization to collect money for their meals.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The demonetization exercise by the Modi government has brought a rarely seen unity among opposition parties, but they stand divided over the way they would protest against the measure on Monday. While the Left parties, including the CPI(M) and CPI have called a 12-hour bandh to protest against demonetization of old high-value currency notes in West Bengal, Mamata Banerjee’s TMC will not join it and only hold protests. The Congress too has decided not to go for a bandh. Senior party leader Jairam Ramesh said no ‘Bharat Bandh’ has been called by the party which will hold nation-wide protests as part of ‘Jan Aakrosh Diwas’.The JD(U) has decided not to participate in the protests by opposition parties on Monday or West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s proposed dharna in Patna on November 30 after its leader and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar welcomed the demonetization decision.”We have supported he Centre’s demonetization move. How can we oppose or be the part of activity like bandh which is meant to protest the issue which our party has strongly supported,” Bihar unit JD(U) President Bashishtha Narayan Singh said. “JD(U) will not be part of any agitation against demonetization including the dharna by Mamata Banerjee on November 30 in Patna,” party Secretary General K C Tyagi said. “We have taken an ideological position in favour of demonetization so how can we be part of any agitation seeking its roll back,” Tyagi said.Odisha’s ruling BJP will also not join the protests with its leader and Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik having hailed the demonetization decision. The opposition parties have been divided over the ways to protest against demonetization ever since Mamata Banerjee decided to march to the President against it. While she was joined by AAP, National Conference and Shiv Sena, an NDA ally, other opposition parties stayed away. Shiv Sena has backed demonetization but is unhappy over the way it was causing problems to people.Mamata’s TMC and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s AAP are the only parties which have demanded a roll back of the exercise, while other parties have voiced displeasure over the way it was being implemented which was causing hardship to common people.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>BJP president Amit Shah lashed out at the opposition on Saturday, saying it was seeking to oppose everything that the Narendra Modi government did only because it did not have any issues to raise. “The opposition has no issues, so it is opposing everything Narendra bhai is doing. If Modi says today is Monday, they will say no no it’s Tuesday,” Shah mocked while addressing a mammoth Kisan Rally organised by the Andhra Pradesh BJP in Tadepalligudem this evening.”The world praised the surgical strikes the Narendra Modi government conducted on Pakistan but Congress only criticised it. The country is happy, the jawans are happy and even kids are happy but Rahul (Gandhi) cried ‘khoon ki dalali’,” he said.”It’s not Sonia-Manmohan government (at the helm) now that remains indecisive. It’s the Modi government that daringly conducted surgical strikes and inflicted a heavy blow to the enemy and the terror camps on its territory,” the BJP chief said, recalling the aftermath of the Uri attack.
ALSO READ Demonetization: Six held for duping businessman of Rs 36 lakh in Gujarat Shah was also critical of the “false propaganda” allegedly being carried out by the opposition over the demonetization issue. “They are spreading rumours that demonetization will hurt the farmers. But let me assure you, it will only benefit the farmers by all means,” he claimed.Asserting that the welfare of farmers and development of the agriculture sector were the top priorities of the Modi government, Shah said every step was being taken to ensure the same. Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu, Minister of State for Commerce Nirmala Sitharaman, BJP national secretary Siddharth Nath Singh, state president K Hari Babu, state minister’s Kamineni Srinivas, P Manikyala Rao and other leaders also attended the rally.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Saturday said he has taken a principled stand on demonetization as he is convinced that the step will help fight black money and laughed off reports of his meeting with BJP President Amit Shah as background to his support.”I support demonetization as I’m convinced that it will help in the fight against black money,” Kumar said addressing a function to mark Prohibition Day in Patna. With political meaning being derived from his stand on demonetization which is different from those of Congress, RJD and other non-BJP parties, Kumar said he has taken a principled stand as in his opinion scrapping of high value bank notes would help in diluting black money.”Is this the first time that I have taken a principled stand which might be politically different from others on an issue on which I’m convinced?” Kumar, who had reminded the media on Friday that he had supported Pranab Mukherjee for presidentship despite being a member of NDA. “Will those hoarding black money be able to deposit the entire volume in bank accounts? Reserve Bank could issue new notes against a quantity of black money which would not find way to banks during the current drive,” he said expressing views on demonetization raging in national politics.
ALSO READ Demonetization: Nitish Kumar calls it ‘courageous step’, dismisses fissures in coalitionKumar, who is also JD(U) National President, laughed at reports appearing in a section of media in Patna which attributed his support to demonetization to his secret meeting with BJP chief Amit Shah at a farmhouse recently. “Had the reporter who gave this news taken me to the farmhouse where I met Amit Shah?” he said and lamented over such “baseless news which hitherto was prevalent only in social media platform”.Kumar, who has described the Centre’s demonetization decision as “sahshik” (courageous), said in addition to scrapping of higher denomination currencies, attack on benami properties and prohibition could lead to creation of “kala dhan mukt Bharat” (black money free India). He said when he spoke of benami properties it includes real estate as well as stocking of gold and diamonds with the help of ill-gotten wealth. “I will urge Prime Minister Narendra Modi that this is the right time to immediately hit at benami properties as well clamp liquor ban for better results against black money,” he said. Kumar, who has taken prohibition in a mission mode in Bihar, said it is well known that people involved in liquor trade have amassed huge benami properties.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Indian marriages are called big and fat primarily because of the lavish amount of money spent on various ceremonies, delicacies and beverages. But believe it or not, the central government’s demonetization announcement led a cash crunch hit couple in Surat to get married for just Rs 500.The groom said their family had decided to give up plans for a grand marriage and served the guests with ‘chai and paani’ (tea and water). The bride said they were initially tense after Modi made the demonetization announcement as their wedding date was already fixed, but then the families decided to go ahead with the wedding. “We were initially tense after Modiji made the demonetization announcement as our wedding date was fixed. Later after considering the situation, we decided to get married without much grandeur by offering just tea and water to guests,” said Daksha, the bride.”Since our wedding date was already fixed; we decided to give up on grand marriage and instead had a ‘chai, paani wala’ wedding,” said Bharat, the groom.After the sudden announcement to demonetize Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes by Narendra Modi, troubles have increased especially for middle class households and lower income families who do not have much cash deposits in their homes to manage without cash.Also, thousands of families are also struggling in this wedding season without having cash in hand to manage the expenses. Brides and grooms to be are also feeling the heat due to the government move.However, in a marginal relief, the RBI has relaxed one of several conditions for withdrawal of Rs 2.5 lakh from bank accounts by making declaration for payments beyond Rs 10,000 only. Earlier, the drawee had to declare all payments he had to make out of the Rs 2.5 lakh withdrawal from the account.The apex bank said lenders will ask for three documents including a detailed list of persons to whom the cash withdrawn is proposed to be paid together with declaration from such persons that they do not have the bank accounts.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Taking suo motu cognisance of media reports about the death of a pregnant woman in a government hospital in Gaya after being allegedly refused dialysis for paying in old Rs 500 notes, Bihar Human Rights Commission (BHRC) directed the district magistrate on Friday and the hospital to submit a detailed report within a fortnight. “The news if true reflects a shocking neglect on the part of functionaries at the government-run premier hospital at Gaya. Issue notices to the district magistrate, Gaya, and superintendent of ANMMCH to file a report to the Commission within a fortnight,” BHRC member Neelmani said in his order.BHRC took suo motu cognisance of media reports that the woman, wife of a daily wage earner had “renal shutdown” and died on Wednesday evening at the Anugrah Narayan Magadh Medical College and Hospital (ANMMCH), Gaya, as its dialysis centre refused to accept old Rs 500 notes, it said.Neelmani said while scrapping high-value currency notes on November 8, the Centre had clearly said the defunct notes would continue to be accepted by government hospitals till November 24 but the patient, Manju Devi, died on November 23 evening.
ALSO READ Demonetization: Left calls for Bengal bandh on November 28, no support from TMC The patient had gone to the government hospital for treatment but the hospital had outsourced the work of dialysis to a private company, he said and asked “Why would a patient suffer for the internal arrangement of a hospital?” The commission posted the matter for hearing on December 20.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Mounting a fresh attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Congress on Friday said leakage of demonetization decision had helped BJP leaders buy property by converting their black money through various means a few months before it was announced. Leader of Congress in Lok Sabha, Mallikarjun Kharge accused the Prime Minister of “selective leakage” of demonetization move to his own partymen, who converted their black money through property and other avenues.”This shows who are the real supporters of black money,” he told reporters outside Parliament House. Kharge said democracy functions through discussion and asked the Prime Minister to participate in the debate in Parliament on the issue if he believed in democratic values. “If the Prime Minister believes in democracy, he should come to Parliament and participate in the debate and answer the concerns raised by the opposition on the demonetization issue.”You think you are a ‘samrat’ (king) and the country runs on the diktat of the ‘samrat’. Instead of speaking outside, you should come to Parliament and speak,” he said. On the Prime Minister not speaking inside Parliament, he said, “If he speaks like this, he knows he could face privilege and contempt.”
ALSO READ Demonetization: Rahul Gandhi eager to see PM Modi’s ‘new emotion’ in ParliamentTerming demonetization as the “biggest scam”, Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala also accused Modi of leaking the demonetization move to top BJP leaders, alleging they bought land using their black money. The party released a list of some BJP leaders who allegedly bought 8 land parcels worth Rs 3.41 crore in Bihar in the run up to the November 8 demonetization move.Surjewala, flanked by Congress spokespersons Rajiv Gowda and Sushmita Dev, alleged that post expose of deposit of money in bank accounts of BJP leaders just before the demonetization, “documents now prove” that BJP leaders bought the land. “Modiji’s mask of fighting black money is off. Stop mocking the people of India and Parliament and look in the mirror. Make all BJP accounts public and tell the details of all property purchased by BJP leaders over the last one year and the truth of demonetization scam will be out,” he said.
ALSO READ Demonetization: Dissolve Parliament and hold fresh elections, Mayawati dares PM Modi”Layers of demonetization scam are getting unearthed by the day as a series of BJP transactions get exposed. Demonetization is emerging as the biggest scam that needs to be probed through JPC and responsibility fixed,” Surjewala said. Kharge said his party was ready to offer any kind of help to curb black money in the country, but objected to the Prime Minister dubbing its leaders as ones standing in support of the menace for raising issues concerning public harassment. “Whatever help you need from us, we will provide for eradicating black money. But, you are playing politics under its garb and are protecting your people. You have given an opportunity to your own people to convert their black money into white through selective leakage. “We will carry on our tirade against it and that is why we want a discussion in Parliament on this. If we want a discussion on black money, you are dubbing us as those in support of black money,” he said.
ALSO READ PM will intervene as & when required: Naidu on demonetization debate in ParliamentKharge also said that people are dying for their own money and this is the situation “we want to discuss in the House with the Prime Minister”. “We requested the Speaker that the Prime Minister must raise the issues he is talking about outside, in the House,” he said.Earlier, hitting out at those accusing the government of not being prepared for demonetization, Modi said they are actually pained that they themselves did not get time to make any preparation. Rajiv Gowda later said Modi had on Friday morning made a mocking attack on the opposition, saying if they had 72 hours, they would have made arrangements. “If anyone had that information and planned to convert black money, it is the BJP,” he said.Sushmita Dev said, “We hope that the Prime Minister will give explanation in Parliament about these land deals. These land deals, not just in Bihar, but all over India, shows that BJP is the corrupt party, which deals in black money.” She said this was done to park BJP’s black money in real estate. “These land deals, all of which took place shortly before November 8 decision flies in the face of Modiji’s statement of wanting to fight black money,” she said.”Modi ji is aware black money is not stashed away in the cupboards of the common man. Today, the revelation made by a BJP member of the Bihar Assembly has proved that in the 6% black money, BJP has a share,” Dev said.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Asserting that the Centre’s survey on demonetization is fake, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) supremo Mayawati on Friday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to dissolve the Lok Sabha and call for a referendum for fair results in this regard.Mayawati blamed Prime Minister Modi for the ongoing uproar in the Parliament and said that his absence is the reason behind both the houses not functioning in a smooth manner. “The Centre’s survey showing people of the nation are in favour of demonetization is fake. If the Prime Minister thinks that he is honest then he should dissolve the Parliament and conduct a referendum in this regard. The Parliament is not able to work because of the Prime Minister as the entire opposition is demanding his presence,” said Mayawati.Prime Minister Narendra Modi earlier on Friday defended the government’s decision to demonetize 500 and 1000 rupee currency notes and said that some are angry on the initiative as they were not informed before the decision was considered.Speaking after releasing two books on Constitution in New Delhi, Prime Minister Modi said those who are criticising the demonetization move don’t have problem with the government’s preparedness, but they are having problems because they didn’t get time to prepare for turning their black money into white.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court will on December 2 hear all pleas including the transfer petition filed by the Centre on the demonetization of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 currency notes.Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi on Friday told the apex court bench headed by Chief Justice of India TS Thakur that he had placed the affidavit on record in connection with the demonetization issue.Senior lawyer Kapil Sibal, who appeared for one of the petitioners, told the bench that people are starving in the streets as there was no cash at all. “Public are suffering every day, no political leader was suffering due to demonetization,” said another lawyer Manohar Lal Sharma.Sharma pleaded that the government should not have demonetized the high-value currency notes and said the apex court should pass appropriate order which it deemed fit to deal with the present situation. The Chief Justice of India remarked demonetization as a very serious matter. “What can be done let us see,” he said.Earlier on Thursday, the Centre submitted an affidavit on the demonetization move in the Supreme Court, saying it is an attempt to unearth black money stashed over the last seven decades. Rohtagi said that the Centre had filed a reply in the Supreme Court in compliance with the top court’s earlier order on the issue. “We have filed the report starting from the initiation of SIT and all other issues which could be the affect of demonetization process,” Rohtagi said.The Centre in its affidavit told the apex court that demonetization is a step to reduce ratio of cash transactions, adding the objective is to unearth illegal parallel economy. “Earlier, we constituted SIT to curb black money, amended Benami Act. The people might have to face some inconveniences. Re-calibration of ATMs is in full swing. Crores of fake currency notes have became useless. Funding of terror groups has been stopped,” said the affidavit. Attorney General Rohatgi had earlier on Monday filed a transfer petition before the Supreme Court seeking a stay on all pending pleas against demonetization. The Supreme Court had on November 18 refused to put a stay on hearings in various High Courts and lower courts related to the demonetization of Rs. 500 and Rs. 1000 currency notes.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Finance Ministry on Thursday announced that there will be no over the counter exchange of old Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes after midnight of November 24. However, certain other exemptions relating to cancellation of legal tender character of old Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes have been extended up to December 15.The government had extended the deadline for the use of old Rs 500, 1000 notes at select places twice – first from November 11 to November 18 and then till November 24. As of now, you can spend your old currency notes till Thursday midnight. After this, you can only deposit the old notes in banks.Meanwhile, a cabinet meet is scheduled to take place at 8pm on Thursday.
ALSO READ Demonetization: Toll tax exemption extended till Dec 2, old notes to be accepted till Dec 15Till Thursday midnight, the following places will accept old Rs 500, Rs 100 notes:# Government hospitals# Pharmacies in government hospitals for buying medicines with doctors’ prescription# Railway ticket booking counters, ticket counters of government-run bus services, airline ticket counters at airports.# Railway catering # Petrol, diesel, CNG gas stations authorised by public sector oil companies# Consumer cooperative stores authorised by State or Central government# Milk booths authorised by state government# Crematoria and burial grounds# LPG gas cylinders # Power and water bills # Entry tickets of ASI monument # Consumer cooperative stores # Taxes and penalties to government bodies Court fees After November 24, here are the provisions under demonetization:# Toll tax on National Highways have been exempted till December 2. After this, old Rs 500 notes will still be accepted at toll plazas till December 15.# Banks to accept old currency notes till December 30 for deposits.# RBI to accept old currency notes till March 31.# Cash withdrawal limit in banks – Rs 2000.# ATM withdrawal limit – Rs 2,500 per card, per day# Current account withdrawals – Rs 50,000 per week# Foreign citizens allowed to exchange Rs 5,000/week# Only Rs 500 to be used in exempted transactions till December 15# Government schools to accept fees in old notes. Payment of School fees up to Rs 2000 per student in Central,State,Municipality & local body schools.# Payment of current & arrears dues for utilities will be limited to only water and electricity.# Deposits and withdrawal at banks allowed, no exchange.# No more over the counter exchange# Payments towards pre-paid mobile top-up to a limit of Rs 500 per top-up will be accepted through old Rs 500 notes.# Purchase from Consumer Cooperative Stores will be limited to Rs 5000 at a time.The government had decommissioned the use of old Rs 500 or Rs 1,000 notes effective November 8 midnight, but had allowed the use of the old notes at select outlets.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a show of strength, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, backed by JD-U, SP, NCP and AAP, held a demonstration against demonetization and ramped up attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, alleging the country was not safe in his hands. Addressing the gathering at Jantar Mantar, Banerjee alleged that abolition of high-value currency notes had heaped pain on people and snatched away democratic rights of almost every section of the society including farmers, youth, women, labourers and traders, besides halting the country’s economic growth.Accusing the BJP-led dispensation of “looting” the common man, she wondered why those having Swiss bank accounts were “not touched at all”, and warned that people will teach a “good lesson” to the ruling party in the upcoming assembly polls for implementing a “black law”. “I can challenge that no one will vote for BJP. If I were you (PM), I would have apologised to the public. Why you are so egoistic? You have branded everyone in the country a black marketeer and have yourself turned into a saint ,” Banerjee said.In his address, JD-U leader Sharad Yadav questioned the legality of the demonetization exercise and challenged the Prime Minister to explain to the Parliament how the decision will benefit the country.”Under which law have you enforced this measure? You are stopping a person from withdrawing his hard-earned money which is his fundamental right. demonetization has destroyed the business of small traders. Come toParliament and explain the logic as to how it will curb black money,” Yadav said.The presence of Yadav at the protest assumes significance as his party had supported demonetization.The street protest was also addressed by SP’s Dharmendra Yadav, AAP’s Raghav Chadha and NCP’s Majid Memon.The West Bengal Chief Minister also lashed out at a group of people who were shouting pro-Modi slogans, alleging that they were sent to disrupt her public meeting and wondered what the police and administration were doing.Referring to yesterday’s bypoll results, the TMC chief said BJP’s victory margins have come down significantly in Madhya Pradesh and that Modi has left the country in the lurch (Modiji ne desh ka barah baja diya).”Banerjee said she will continue her fight till woes of the people are not addressed, adding she will also support a country-wide protest called by the Opposition parties on November 28 against demonetization.Last week, Banerjee had addressed a rally against demonetization along with Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. Banerjee said the government has lost all “credentials and credibility” and that because of demonetization, the GDP may decline sharply. “This government will have to go…I am sorry to say, the country is not secure under you Modiji. You do things on your whims and fancies,” she said.Without elaborating, she also alleged that the demonetization measure has brought back the pre-Independence feudal system in the country as people are struggling to get cash.Referring to the Prime Minister’s assertion that more steps to curb black money will follow, the West Bengal Chief Minister expressed apprehension that government may aim to get hold of the gold, land and other properties from the people in the next phase.”Almost all shops have downed shutters. Even malls have closed down. Our economy had improved and we survived the global recession. But because of demonetization, our GDP will go down. The economy has been hit badly,” she said.The West Bengal Chief Minister said her fight against demonetization was not to gain political mileage as there was no election scheduled in West Bengal and that she decided to hit the streets seeing plight of the common man.”This is not a fight for political gains. People in my state are suffering. People across the country are suffering Where should they go? This fight is for the rights of the poor and the downtrodden,” she said.Asserting that she will continue to fight for the common citizens, Banerjee said, “I am not afraid of any government.You put me in jail, I will not get scared. My struggle will continue.”Alleging that people were sent to disrupt her protest, she said in democracy everyone has right to agitate, adding “this soil doesn’t belong to BJP party, but to this country.” The West Bengal Chief Minister said she would travel to Punjab and Gujarat to take forward the fight. She said she was planning to go to Lucknow and Varanasi, Prime Minister Modi’s parliamentary constituency.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Wednesday sought response of all the petitioners, who have challenged the demonetization move in different high courts, on a plea by the Centre seeking transfer of all these matters to either the apex court or one of the high courts.However, a three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice TS Thakur refused the Centre’s request to stay the proceedings pending before various high courts, saying people may get “immediate relief” from them. “We don’t want to stay it. There are various issues. People may get immediate relief from the high courts,” the bench also comprising Justices DY Chandrachud and L Nageswara Rao told Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi. During the hearing, the bench asked the AG, “We think you must have taken appropriate steps. What is the situation now? How much have you collected so far?” Responding to it, the AG said the situation is “much better” and more than Rs six lakh crores have been deposited so far in the banks since the demonetization move. “More than Rs 6 lakh crores have been deposited so far,” the AG said, adding, “There is a big surge in digital use of money transaction.”He said the demonetization move was aimed at removing the 70 years of “slush money” and the government is monitoring the situation day-by-day and hour-by-hour.He told the bench that government has set up a committee which will take stock of the ground situation across the country on demonetization move. Rohatgi told the apex court that general rule is that the cash transactions in the market should not be more than four per cent of the GDP but it is 12 per cent in India. Rohatgi told the bench that various petitions have been filed challenging the demonetization move before different high courts across the country and these matters should be transferred to the apex court or one of the high courts. The bench has fixed the matter for December 2 and has directed the persons who are petitioners before different high courts to file their response on Centre’s transfer plea by then.The apex court had on November 18 dubbed as a “serious issue” the long queues outside banks and post offices and expressed its reservation on the Centre’s plea seeking a direction that no other court in the country should entertain petitions challenging the November 8 notification demonetizing Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 currency notes.It had made the remarks after the AG submitted that any matter relating to challenge to the demonetization issue be heard by the apex court only.However, the bench noted that people were facing difficulties saying, they are affected and have the right to approach the courts. The bench had questioned the relief measures undertaken by the Centre and asked why it had squeezed the exchange limit to Rs 2,000.The AG had then explained the situation by stating that after printing, the currency has to be moved to thousands of centres across the country and ATMs have to be re-calibrated.He had also said that Rs 100 notes are in circulation and the ATMs needed to be re-calibrated to issue new currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 2,000.The Centre had moved the apex court on November 17 seeking a stay on the proceedings before various high courts and other courts except the apex court against demonetization issue, saying otherwise it will create a lot of confusion.The apex court had on November 15 refused to stay the government’s demonetization notification, but asked it to spell out the steps taken to minimise public inconvenience.Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in a televised address to the nation on November 8, had announced that Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes will no longer be legal tender from November 9.He had said the government has declared a “decisive war” against black money and corruption.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Asserting that the Centre has made a string of announcements and statements since it unleashed the radical scheme of demonetization, the Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Tuesday emphasised that this was exactly the opposite of the government’s assertion of ‘perfect planning’.”It has been 15 days now and the Finance Minister has assured that this was 100% perfect planning. If the planning was that perfect, then why has the Centre made 17 different announcements which are all to do with tinkering,” TMC spokesperson Derek O’Brien said.Calling on all factions within the society to speak up against demonetization, he further said that this was not just about politicians fighting for the poor people but a much larger issue as the national economy at the moment was a complete mess.”Everyone needs to speak up including civil society and student. We as politicians are doing everything we can, but the corporate India needs to speak up because the economy is in a complete mess and this is a financial emergency,” O’Brien said.Alleging that the Indian economy has already lost Rs 3,50,000 crore of GDP, he further said that demonetization will affect each and every citizen within the nation.Meanwhile, the Opposition is set to go all out against the Centre in its battle against demonetization by taking their case to President Pranab Mukherjee.The decision was made today in the meeting called by all Opposition parties and a time and date for the meeting with the President was sought. This new assault plan comes after the Opposition announced that it will protest on Wednesday outside the Parliament in front of the Gandhi statue. “Opposition parties jointly decided that around 200 MPs will hold dharna in front of Gandhi statue on Wednesday,” O’Brien said.Earlier today, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today chaired the crucial Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Parliamentary meeting, where a resolution was passed in favour of demonetization..In the meeting, the Prime Minister Modi was lauded for the scheme and he asserted that his government had come in power for the service of the poor. The opposition has been clamouring for the Prime Minister’s presence in the Parliament, saying that he has a moral obligation to answer the common man whose life has been thrown in turmoil because of demonetization.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a shocking development, two freshly minted notes of Rs. 2000 were recovered from the bodies of the two terrorists, who were gunned down on Tuesday in an encounter with security forces in Bandipora, Jammu and Kashmir.The Army and the police in a joint operation had cordoned off the area to smoke out the two terrorists who were holed up and had opened fire, thus engaging in a heavy gunbattle early in the morning.on Monday, four masked men with arms along with them entered into a bank at a state-run Jammu and Kashmir branch in Malpora and left with Rs 13 lakh largely comprising of the scrapped 500 and 1,000 note currencies.Earlier, three masked men had looted a bank of Rs 2.25 lakh in Kulgam district on October 25.While announcing the radical step of demonetization on November 8th, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has assured that this move was targeting tax evasion, corruption and forgery and also stressed that terror attacks including those facilitated by Pakistan often include counterfeit 500-rupee notes.