Yashwant Sinha calls Jaitley ‘economically illiterate’

Yashwant Sinha
Yashwant Sinha says the next government should probe demonetisation. Photo: Ashutosh Tripathi.

Dubbing Union finance minister Arun Jaitley as ‘economically illiterate,’ former Union minister Yashwant Sinha has said the economy of the world’s largest democracy is being run by economy illiterate people.

Criticising the policy planning of the Centre, the veteran BJP leader said the condition of the Indian economy was ‘serious’ and needed immediate reforms.

“The Prime Minister took the decision of demonetization but he is not able to tell us the benefits of this drastic step this elections. He has not even used the word ‘note bandi’ in any of his election speeches and is only playing on the issue of Pakistan because it will help them divide society and get votes,” Sinha said in a quick interaction with The Federal in Lucknow.

Sinha was in Lucknow to campaign for the SP-BSP coalition’s Lucknow Lok Sabha candidate Poonam Sinha, wife of Shatrughan Sinha. Demonetization was a scam of more than one lakh crore and many BJP leaders were involved in it,” he said. If a new government comes to power at the Centre, it should probe demonetisation, referred to as India’s biggest reform, he added.

“This government is a total failure on all the fronts. They have failed in creating jobs and increasing the income of the farmers. They are presenting fake, fabricated data to the country. The have also failed our institutions and are destroying the federal structure of our democracy,” he said adding that the BJP has now become ‘Modi Janata Party.’

Clarifying that he had nothing against Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Sinha emphasised that he was only concerned about issues confronting the nation.

He further said,”The government first ended the Planning commission which used to be the spine of Indian government and started the NITI Aayog which is nothing but a field office of the Prime Minister. The only work the NITI Aayog does is fabrication of data to mislead the people. I again repeat that NITI Aayog was created only with the intention of dressing up the data.”

Today’s BJP was not the BJP that Atal Bihari Vajpayi was leading, he said, “The party is now dividing Indian society on communal lines by taking the name of Pakistan in its election speeches. They do not take the name of China, which is a major threat as it will not help them split votes. Pakistan is nowhere near India in terms of technology, development or defence but you (Narendra Modi) still compare India with it not with China.” He added, “Despite having a 56-inch broad chest you (Modi) fear China so much.”

Criticising the Prime Minister, the former foreign minister said the Prime Minister is responsible for the low electoral discourse in the ongoing parliamentary elections.

“When the Prime Minister himself is endorsing the candidature of people like Sadvi Pragya, what else can you expect from other politicians. Sadhvi’s candidature does not augur well for Indian democracy,”he said.

When asked about the use of Balakot air strike for electoral gains, he said it is a shameful thing for any political party to use the courage and valour of the Indian Army to win elections. It also is highly disrespectful to the soldiers.

Answering a question in connection with the clean chit given by the poll panel to Prime Minister Modi’s speech in Wardha against Rahul Gandhi, he called for reforming the Election Commission.

When asked about the gathbandhan fielding Poonam Sinha, a weak candidate against Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, Sinha said that Singh has failed to meet the expectations of the Lucknow people and therefore didn’t deserve another chance.