Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman has hit out at Congress leader Rahul Gandhi for criticising the Narendra Modi government’s ambitious plan to raise Rs 6 lakh crore through the newly launched National Monetisation Pipeline (NMP).
Notably, Rahul Gandhi had on Tuesday as well as Wednesday criticised the Centre for the NMP. He tweeted, “The very first thing they sold was respect and now #IndiaOnSale.” Gandhi had on Tuesday said that it helped Prime Minister Narendra Modi “sell the country’s crown jewels, built over 70 years with public money, to his industrialist friends”.
What Nirmala Sitharaman said
Taking a dig at Rahul Gandhi, Sitharaman said, “Does he (Rahul Gandhi) understand what monetisation is? It was Congress that sold the country’s resources and made kickbacks in it.”
Sitharaman’s Cabinet colleague Smriti Irani, who defeated Rahul Gandhi from Amethi in the general election in 2019, has also criticised the Congress. “In 70 years of Independence, the district the MP led (Amethi) did not even get a district hospital. Their problem is that 6 lakh crore rupees will come from this disinvestment. That is why they are having trouble,” she added.
Congress criticised NMP
The Congress has termed the government’s move as legalised loot and organised plunder asserting that invaluable public assets created over decades are being handed over to a chosen few.
Congress leader Jairam Ramesh said, “First came the demonetisation disaster, which Dr Manmohan Singh rightly described as ”organised loot and legalised plunder”. Now comes monetisation mela— invaluable public assets created over decades given away to a chosen few. This is legalised loot and organised plunder.”
Apart from Ramesh, Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi also targeted the Centre saying it has made the country dependent on its “billionaire friends”. In a tweet in Hindi, Gandhi said, “While giving the “jumla” of ”Aatmanirbhar”, they have made the entire government dependent on ”billionaire friends”. All the work for those billionaire friends and all the wealth also for them. This government is giving away assets worth lakhs of crore made from the hard work of the people of the country in the last 70 years to its billionaire friends.
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