Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday demanded that the Centre withdraw its decision to demonetise Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes, accusing the National Democratic Alliance government of creating a major scam in the guise of curbing corruption. “A huge scam has been perpetrated a few days ago in the name of tackling corruption,” he said. “When the PM announced the move, he had informed all of his friends who had black money, and they secured their money.”
The Aam Aadmi Party chief also alleged that the amount of money being deposited at banks had been grossly inflated. “In previous quarters, deposits in banks were negative. But in the July-September quarter, such large amounts were being deposited in the banks. Who did all this money belong to?”
“The government has said that those who deposit their black money will have to pay tax and face a 200% penalty, which means 90% of the amount will be lost. Which black money holder is going to make such a deposit?,” Kejriwal said.
Like other Opposition parties, he accused the Centre of inconveniencing the public with its surprise decision to scrap the Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes. “What kind of person holds black money in this country? Is it the Adanis, Ambanis, Subhash Chandras and Badals? Or is it rickshawala, cobbler, labourer or farmer?” he asked.
Kejriwal’s accusations come a day after Bharatiya Janata Party National President Amit Shah rejected claims that the move to discontinue the high-value notes was politically motivated. Shah had also questioned the commitment of Opposition leaders to “weed out black money from the economy”.
The Centre on Friday said people can pay their public utility bills with old Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes till November 14. However, one can only clear arrears or current bills and no advance payments will be accepted. These notes will also be accepted at railway ticket counters, fuel stations etc. Earlier, the deadline was set to expire on Friday midnight.