Ahmedabad: Attacking the Centre over its inability to arrest the declining rupee against the US dollar, Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi today said the Centre was neither concerned about the economy nor the falling rupee but only worried about saving its chair.
“The country is disappointed today because the government is neither concerned about the economy nor the falling rupee. It is only worried about saving its chair,” Modi said today.
The Indian rupee continued its slide today morning, breaching the 64-mark against dollar by falling 98 paise to trade at a record low of 64.11 on persistent dollar demand and a weak opening in the domestic equity market.
The domestic currency had yesterday recorded the decade's worst single-day fall of 148 paise to close at record low of 63.13 against the dollar in the previous session. He lambasted the Centre for not taking any steps to strengthen the currency against the US dollar.
“The rupee has fallen rapidly in the past three months. But the government has not taken any steps in the last three months to strengthen the rupee against the US dollar. If the rupee keeps falling like this, other countries will start taking advantage of India,” the BJP poll campaign committee chairman said.
Terming the leadership as direction less, the PM-aspirant said, “The country might have never imagined that it would face such an economic crisis. But when leadership during such a crisis is direction less, then hopelessness increases. The Centre has not taken any step to instill confidence among people.”
He took the Centre to task for failing to rein in inflation.
“For the last five years, every three months, we have been hearing from the Centre that prices will come down and inflation will be controlled but nothing has happened,” Modi stated.
Ravi Shankar Prasad (BJP) said the Minister should “at least voluntarily recuse himself” from replying to the query on missing files.
Supporting the demand, Sitaram Yechury (CPI-M) said, “The House must know how these files are missing. It is appropriate that the Minister then incharge should make the statement how the files went missing.”
Replying to the opposition attack, Jaiswal conceded that some files are missing and hence an inter-Ministerial Committee headed by an additional secretary has been set up to look into the issue and any action will be taken only after its report.
“The mandate given to the Committee is to examine and review non-availability of files/documents and suggest appropriate action,” he said, adding the Committee has held two meetings and documents are being located.
Amid slogan shouting by BJP, Jaiswal said some documents belonging to a period prior to 2004 are missing and alleged who had the interest in getting the files to pre-2004 period missing while pointing the needle of suspicion at NDA regime.
Earlier Jaitley alleged that “files don't disappear, they are made to disappear” and said, “the files contain evidences of arbitrary allotments...the evidence of crime are in those files...if files disappear, the possibility of their escaping the punishment for a crime is obviously there.”
He said destruction of evidence in a case being probed by CBI and monitored by Supreme Court is in itself a crime. “Has the Minister registered any FIR? Have you taken any legal recourse,” he asked.
There was uproar by the entire Opposition when Derek O'Brien (TMC) quoted a Congress spokesperson as saying, “the files are being re-written” and BJP raised slogans of “shame, shame”.