Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Monday alleged that the Bharatiya Janata Party-led central government implemented demonetisation, the Goods and Services Tax, and the coronavirus lockdown with an aim of destroying India’s informal sector.
Gandhi made the statement in the first of a four-part video series titled “Arthvyavastha (economics) Ki Baat, Rahul Gandhi ke saath”. He said the BJP has been attacking the informal sector for the past six years. “I can give you three examples right now: demonetisation, wrong Goods and Service Tax, and lockdown,” he said in the video. “Don’t think as though there were no thoughts behind this lockdown... The aim was to destroy the informal sector.”
He claimed that there is a huge sum of money in the informal sector that the ruling government wanted to take away for itself.
“The result will be that India will not be able to create employment,” Gandhi said. “[This is] because the informal sector provides employment to more than 90% if the population. India will not be able to generate jobs if this is broken... The citizens are being cheated and are being prepared to become slaves. We have to identify this attack and fight it.”
Gandhi also praised the United Progressive Alliance government for its handling of the global recession in 2008. The Congress leader said India was among the countries least affected by the recession and he had asked Manmohan Singh, who the prime minister during the period, how he managed to tackle the crisis.
“He [Manmohan Sigh] told me that in order to understand the situation, you will have to know that there are of two kinds [of economy] here: organised and non-organised.” Gandhi said. “The first one involves major companies while the second includes farmers, labourers, small shop owners [and] middle-sized companies. Till the day the non-organised sector is strong, no economic storm can touch India.”
In July, Gandhi had launched a series attacking the Narendra Modi government for its handling of India’s tension with China. This had come after clashes between the armies of both nations in eastern Ladakh on June 15. At least 20 Indian soldiers were killed and 76 injured in the incident.