Congress pitches tent to step up protest against note ban

RSTV Bureau
New Delhi: Congress Vice President, Rahul Gandhi with senior leader Ahmed Patel at AICC headquarters,  New Delhi. Photo - PTI

New Delhi: Congress Vice President, Rahul Gandhi with senior leader Ahmed Patel at AICC headquarters, New Delhi.
Photo – PTI

Following a string of sharp attack on Modi government by its deputy leader Rahul Gandhi, Congress party is planning to spread its offensive against the issue of demonetisation. The principal opposition party will hold a series of press conferences followed by a country-wide protest from January first week.

In fact, so much the party is banking to build its political narrative around the issue of note ban, that it dominated the Congress party’s 132nd foundation day meet on Wednesday, where Rahul Gandhi once again took on the government and especially Prime Minister Modi.

Addressing the gathering of top party leaders including all members of the Congress Working Committee – Congress’ apex decision making body – Rahul Gandhi had exhorted his party to reach out to those “pained” by the demonetisation.

Starting Thursday, top Congress leaders will hold pressers at all district headquarters to be followed by similar conferences at the district level across the country on January 2 and 3.

Interestingly, senior Congress leader and former Union Finance minister P Chidambaram will hold a press conference on Friday. He had opened the Congress party’s attack questioning the economic rationale behind the move to demonetise higher denomination currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 just a day after it was announced by PM Modi on November 8.

New Delhi:  Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh at Parliament House Lawns, New Delhi.  Photo - PTI

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh at Parliament House Lawns, New Delhi.
Photo – PTI

That gave way to a pitched political battle between the two parties, which saw the washout of Winter session of parliament, where several other opposition parties and even government ally Shiv Sena too opposed the move.

The Opposition, and especially Congress, have accused the government of not thinking through the move. Criticising the government over the “inconvenience” caused to the common man and especially to the farmers and poors, former Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh had dubbed the move as “monumental management failure”.

Following the volleys of slogans and protest inside and outside the Parliament, Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi had in the last days of Winter session accused Prime Minister Modi of “personal corruption” in the demonetisation move.

Last week, while addressing a rally in PM Modi’s home state Gujarat, Gandhi alleged the former of receiving “money” from some business houses during his tenure as the Chief Minister of Gujarat.

And now, banking its revival on the issue of note ban, it has decided to hit the streets.

According to the programme finalised by the Congress party vice president, its workers will hold series of meetings of the state units in the first week of January followed by demonstrations on January 6 and 7.