De-Monetization: Total Mismanagement says former PM Dr Manmohan Singh

  • Though I Do Not Disagree with objectives, there has been total Mismanagement: Dr Manmohan Singh
  • The Daily Change of Rules reflects poorly on PM's office and RBI: Dr Singh
  • Economist and former PM Dr Manmohan Singh in Parliament during the notes ban in parliament debate in the Rajya Sabha

Manmohan Singh
The Video of the Speech in the Rajya Sabha may be seen here:

Conceding to a united Opposition’s demand after a week of sharp criticisms, prime minister Narendra Modi had to present himself to the upper house of parliament today. He was present in the Rajya Sabha –the house of elders—when his scheme to abolish 500 and 1,000-rupee notes was labelled "a monumental management failure" by his predecessor, Dr Manmohan Singh.

"I do not disagree with these objectives, but there is monumental mismanagement of which there are no two opinions in the country as a whole," said Dr Singh, whose government was decisively defeated by PM Modi two years ago.

Dr Singh, a reputed economist, opened the debate in the Rajya Sabha on demonetisation on behalf of his party, the Congress. He said that while he cannot presume to know "the final outcome," agricultural and economic growth will be dented by the PM's sudden cancellation on November 8 of the high-denomination currency. It is here, in rural India where people have been hit especially hard. With limited or no access to banks and at a time when farmers are sowing their winter crop, the shortage of cash has the potential to turn into a crisis. The government has announced urgent measures to help farmers, like allocating 21,000 cores to state-lender NABARD to dispense as loans. The government has also indicated that while it expects a contraction of growth for a quarter, it is prepping a big investment push as compensation.

Since the winter session of parliament began last week, the opposition has attacked the government for failing to anticipate the shortage of cash that has eclipsed the country since the notes were cancelled with just a few hours of notice. Opposition leaders have been demanding a statement from the PM, while the government, till today, said Finance Minister Arun Jaitley would present the government's explanation.

Dr Singh's speech was preceded by sparring between opposition leaders and the Finance Minister, who said that the former PM's comments should be made once the debate was formally initiated.
There have also been serious questions raised on whether or not this drastic move will in anyway reduce either black money or corruption.



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