Press Trust of india

Cong releases ‘black paper’ on Modi govt’s failures; flags unemployment, neglect of non-BJP states

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New Delhi, Feb 8 (PTI) The Congress on Thursday released a “black paper” to highlight the “failures” of the Modi government and alleged that the last 10 years have been a period of “injustice” and of “discrimination” against states headed by non-BJP dispensations.

The ‘black paper’, titled ’10 saal anyay kaal’ also alleged that issues such as rising prices, unemployment, subversion of institutions and farmers’ “distress” had plagued the country.

Congress president Malllikarjun Kharge released the 54-page “charge sheet” against the Centre ahead of the government’s tabling in Parliament of a ‘white paper’ on the “mismanagement” of the economy prior to 2014 aimed at drawing lessons.

“Whenever PM (Narendra) Modi presents his views in Parliament, he hides his failures. At the same time, when we speak about the failures of the government, it is not given importance. Therefore, we thought of bringing out a black paper and tell the public about the failures of the government,” Kharge, who was flanked by party leaders Pawan Khera and Syed Naseer Hussain, said at a press conference at his residence here.

In a sharp attack at Prime Minister Modi over his claim that the Congress was creating a narrative to divide the country into north and south, Kharge said those who falsely accuse others of dividing the country and of regionalism, “those liars” do not even remember what they said.

“Modi ji, when you were the chief minister of Gujarat, you used to talk about the tax rights of Gujarat with the UPA government. Then you said that states should get 50 per cent tax. You also said that people of Gujarat pay Rs 48,600 crore tax and get only 2.5 per cent back,” Kharge said.

Kharge also alleged that during Modi’s chief ministership, he incited violence and said such a person should not talk about south and north divide.

The BJP hit back at the Congress over its ‘black paper’ against the Modi government, claiming that the opposition party has brought it to hide its “black deeds” and is in pain as it wants action in corruption cases stopped.

In the presser, Kharge also alleged that there is a “danger to democracy” in the country and accused the BJP of attempting and also toppling elected governments.

“Non-BJP ruled states such as Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Kerala and Andhra Pradesh are being discriminated against and neglected. They (Centre) don’t release funds and then say we have released the funds but it was not spent. They purposely stall work… this is a big conspiracy of the BJP,” he alleged.

Kharge also alleged that the Modi government was “extorting” money through the route of electoral bonds.

“They are using this money to finish democracy. They made 411 MLAs cross over to their side. We had elected governments in Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Goa, Manipur and Uttarkhand. You know how governments were made to fall,” he said.

Kharge also claimed that he got abusive calls a few days ago and he has got a case registered in a police station.

“When I was small, we lost so much. Only I was left along with my father in my family….But they target me, defame me, abuse me. A person who is a Scheduled Caste has no one behind him. They want to defame such a person,” he said.

Hitting out at the BJP, Kharge said they make a big deal about the president belonging to the Scheduled Caste community or Scheduled Tribe community. “We also made internationally known and well-educated Scheduled Caste person the president. I am not criticising the present president,” he said.

The “black paper” highlights social, economic and political “injustices” committed during the Modi government’s tenure.

“The Modi government’s 10 years in power have devastated the country’s economy, aggravated unemployment, destroyed the country’s agricultural sector, abetted crimes against women and committed grave injustices against minorities in the country,” the party alleged in its document.

“The Modi government is silent on price rise… the prices of petrol, diesel and daily essentials has reached record levels,” the party said.

Terming the 2016 move of demonetisation as a “blunder”, the party said economic effects of the “disastrous demonetisation” seven years ago continue to haunt the country even now.

The black paper also raised issues such as “unemployment, price rise, farmers’ distress, failure to carry out a caste census and injustice to women”.

Kharge said the prime minister talks of Jawaharlal Nehru and Indira Gandhi whenever he is asked about price rise. But they (NDA) are ruling now and they should answer what they have done to control inflation, he added.

It was Modi’s guarantee to provide two crore jobs every year and ensure MSP to farmers. Now the prime minister should say he could not do it. Instead he has come up with new guarantees.

“The Congress ensured country’s independence and in 2024, it will take country out of BJP’s ‘darkness of injustice’,” he said.

The ‘black paper’ also alleged that India has become “electoral autocracy” and cited the V-Dem institute. The party also hit out at the government over the Manipur issue and the border situation with China.

Sharing a link to the black paper, Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh recalled that on January 4, 2014, then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh made two far reaching statements that are most relevant today.

“It encapsulates the Black Paper…Dr Manmohan Singh said: 1. History will be kinder to me. 2. It will be disastrous for the country to have Shri Narendra Modi as the Prime Minister. Both statements have been proved right today.”

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