Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman addresses the audience at the National Conclave on nine years of the Modi government at Vigyan Bhawan in New Delhi on Saturday. Pic/PTI
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has begun a nationwide public outreach programme to mark the 9th year of the Modi Sarkar. Designed around a three-point agenda of âservice, good governance and welfare of the poor,' Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman launched it here on Monday, to be taken to all Lok Sabha and Assembly constituencies of the state ahead of the next year's elections.
"Under Narendra Modi's leadership, the country has achieved all inclusive development. It has set a new parameter of development by bringing the poor into the mainstream," she said, adding that 80 crore people were given food security, 2.5 crore housing units distributed and 11.72 crore toilets constructed. She highlighted the COVID-19 vaccination programme, in which 220 cr doses were administered, as one of the global successes of the government.
Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, who leads the party's campaign in Maharashtra, presented statistical details of the welfare scheme beneficiaries of the state. He alleged that some schemes were not supported by the then MVA government. "In Maharashtra alone, our governments have achieved in nine years what wasn't done in 20 years (by the previous regimes). I am sure the new India that has emerged between 2014 and 2023 will definitely fulfill our dream of being a developed country," he said.
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Earlier in the day, former union FM P Chidambaram addressed the media in Mumbai, calling out the Modi sarkar for being a failure on all fronts. Similar press conferences were held across the country.
He stated that the Indian economy faced serious issues of inflation, unemployment and mismanagement of welfare schemes.
He lambasted the Centre for withdrawing the Rs 2,000 note, calling it a spectacle which came seven years after the denomination's thoughtless introduction. He said inflation and unemployment had destroyed the lives of many, while a select few were increasing their wealth. He said a widening gap between the poor and the rich has exposed Modi's policies. Taking a pot shot at the researchers in the BJP, he said the Karnataka election results have shown their misreading of the political and social situation.
Reacting to Chidambaram's comment on the Rs 2,000 note, Sitharaman said the former FM's statements did not augur well for the country. "The decision on the R2,000 note was taken by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) considering various aspects. It was wrong to cast aspersions on a matter like a currency decision taken by the central bank and make comparisons with other countries."
"For a former finance minister who has served for 10 years in the ministry, raising questions or casting aspersions on the decisions of the RBI does not augur well for the country," she added.
Approx no. of toilets constructed: Sitharaman