Opposition leaders on Tuesday alleged money laundering during demonetisation in 2016 and aired a video purportedly showing a Bharatiya Janata Party worker from Gujarat charging 40% commission to exchange invalid notes after the deadline to do so was over.
The video shows a person exchanging money purportedly after December 31, 2016, the deadline set by the Centre to exchange old notes. The amount exchanged was Rs 5 crore.
However, the Opposition have not authenticated the video and claimed it was filmed by journalists from a news portal called Tricolour News Network World.
The video was released during a press conference in Delhi jointly addressed by several Opposition leaders, including Sharad Yadav from Loktantrik Janata Dal, Hemant Soren of Jharkhand Mukti Morcha, Manoj Jha from Rashtriya Janata Dal, and Congress leaders Ahmed Patel, Ghulam Nabi Azad Mallikarjun Kharge and Kapil Sibal.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said the video was fake. “The ‘Fakery Caravan’ of the UPA continues to move,” he said on Twitter. “After a fake BSY Diary, a fake sting. When there are no real issues, rely on ‘fakery’.”
Sibal claimed all the money shown in the tape was exchanged after December 31, 2016. “That could only have been possible with the help of banks, police, political leaders, bank managers, officials and other people sitting at the top,” he added, according to The Wire.
“The prime minister said the exercise would end corruption and black money, but did not tell the real truth behind it,” said Sibal. “The exercise was used to loot the poor, some ‘chowkidars’ betrayed the nation and money was picked from ordinary man’s pocket… What can be a bigger crime than looting the exchequer and enriching the party?”
The Opposition said demonetisation had adversely impacted the ordinary people. “Many units closed down and crores of people were rendered unemployed,” said Azad.