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Congress depressed over Modi's growing popularity: Venkaiah Naidu

Hitting back at the Congress over its criticism of demonetization, Union Minister M Venkaiah Naidu on Wednesday said the entire process was undertaken in a transparent manner and the Congress is “depressed” over the growing popularity of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Stating that Congress did not have the “guts” to implement demonetization during its tenure, he said the Opposition just wants to make “false allegation” and is not ready for a discussion on the issue in Parliament.

“Demonetization has been well received by the people, poor people, middle class, honest tax payers. All are happy about the same, now the money has reached the banks. How much money is black, how much is white will be known after scrutiny,” he told reporters at the Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit here.

“Congress Party and the other parties are depressed over the growing popularity of the Prime Minister because everywhere all surveys indicate 70-80 per cent of the people are hailing the decision of the Prime Minister. Why they are becoming jittery and making such absurd allegations,” he said.

Congress, he said, is now going to people to voice their protest over demonetization, but people have voted them out in Gujarat Panchayat election, Gujarat municipal elections, in Chandigarh municipal elections, in Faridabad municipal elections and in Maharashtra.

“In Madhya Pradesh by-election and Assam by-election and also various by-elections across the country, everywhere it is BJP. BJP s winning spree is continuing. Even in the Panchayat elections in Gujarat it was almost a sweep. Keeping that in mind, they are becoming jittery…what can we do. All these people, why they are objecting to demonetization, they had no guts to do it during their regime and now they are unnecessarily making false allegations and no one is going to take them seriously,” Naidu said.

There is no parallel of the demonetization decision in the world, he said, adding that while there may be “some temporary difficulty and slowdown”, catch up will happen soon.

Keeping up the heat on the note ban issue, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi today launched a fresh attack on Modi for the demonetization move, saying for the first time India’s Prime Minister is being “ridiculed” for the decision.

With regard to advancing Budget date to February 1, he said “the solution has to be given by the court”.

He said: “The solution has been sent (by Government), what will happen in the court… The matter is before the election commission so it would not be fair for me to comment.

We have not done this secretly, nor all of a sudden. We have made announcement on this, PM has said that Budget should happen earlier. We will see what election commission decides.” Government yesterday replied to a notice of the Election Commission over advancement of budget date.