The Congress on Friday wished Prime Minister Narendra Modi on his 71st birthday but said the country is paying the price for his "failures" on several fronts and so the day is being observed as "unemployment day", "anti-farmer day" and "high prices day".
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi extended his wishes to the prime minister on Twitter. "Happy Birthday, Modi Ji," he said. For the Indian Youth Congress and the NSUI, it was "national unemployment day".
Congress spokesperson Supriya Shrinate said birthdays of former prime ministers are celebrated as different days, with Jawaharlal Nehru's birthday as "Children's Day", Indira Gandhi's as "National Integration Day", Rajiv Gandhi's as "Sadbhavna Day" and Atal Bihari Vajpayee's as "Good Governance Day". But Modi's birthday is being observed as "unemployment day", she added.
She said she prays that God gives the prime minister the wisdom to realize what he has led the country to.
"It is the prime minister's birthday and from this platform, we wish him a happy birthday. We pray for his well being, but we do believe that this day is being celebrated in many parts of the country as unemployment day, anti-farmer day, high prices day, crippled economy day, as winning over your crony capitalists friends day, as ED, IT, CBI raid day, and the corona mismanagement day," Shrinate told reporters.
"We do believe that in the last seven years, you have failed on several fronts and we hope and pray that God gives you the wisdom to realize that this is what you have led the country to. This is where, you have failed and today as a result, India is paying a heavy price for it," she also said.
She claimed India has the maximum number of unemployed people despite Modi's tall promises.
She alleged that every month, jobs are being lost and asked, "where are those two crore annual jobs, one would want to ask? Why are 61 lakh government jobs lying vacant?"
Noting that farmers are protesting for nine long months without a solution in sight, Shrinate said high prices in gas, diesel, petrol, edible oil, pulses, daily essential items are making the lives of people difficult.
She claimed demonetization and GST have crippled the economy and there has been the shutdown of MSMEs and small businesses as a result, as an investment in the consumption chain is completely broken.
"Still, you have put India on sale for a few friends of yours, and which is why we must be calling it the 'punjipati poojan divas' (crony capitalist friends day)," she said.
Shrinate also alleged that during the Covid crisis, the country faced a shortage of vaccines, oxygen, essential drugs as the prime minister was too busy electioneering and the "red flags were being manipulated to suit his image".
She accused the prime minister of misuse of ED, IT, CBI, as frontal organizations. "The PM has broken the very framework of our Constitution and they have hurt the very foundation of our democracy and which is why, the 'ED, IT, CBI raid divas' is perhaps an apt coinage here," she alleged.
ALSO READ | Over one crore vaccine doses administered as BJP aims to make PM Modi's birthday historic
ALSO READ | At E-Auction of PM Modi's momentos, sports gear of Olympians, Paralympians grab eyeballs