In a sharp response to BJP leaders who termed the minimum income guarantee scheme (NYAY) promised by the Congress as something that could not be implemented, Congress president Rahul Gandhi hit back stating that his party, upon coming to power, would forcibly take money from the pockets of big businessmen who looted the country under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rule and put it into the bank accounts of poor people. He was addressing a public rally jointly organised by the Congress and the Janata Dal(S) here Friday.
“When we promised NYAY, the BJP and Mr. Modi started asking from where we will mobilise money for the scheme. Whenever we come up with any pro-people programmes, they ask from where we would bring the money for them. Now, I tell you that the money for the scheme meant for the 20 % of the poor will not come from the pockets of the middle class. Instead, we will, soon after coming to power, forcibly take the money from Ambani, Choksi, Mallya and others who looted the country and put it in the accounts of the poor [through NYAY],” he said, referring to industrialists Anil Ambani, Vijay Mallya and Mehul Choksi who are allegedly involved in different scams.
Terming the scheme as very much implementable, Mr. Gandhi said that his party would show Mr. Modi that it would be possible to spend ₹ 3.60 lakh crore every year for the scheme.
“Mr. Modi has promised that he would bring back Indian black money from abroad and distribute ₹ 15 lakh to each individual in the country. But, he did not fulfil it. We have promised to pay ₹ 72,000 every year to 5 crore families [20% of the poorest population] and we would fulfil it and show him [Mr. Modi],” he said.
Countering the Modi regime on the promise of employment generation, the Congress president said that the BJP’s promise to generate two crore jobs every year turned out to be a hoax. “Forget about generating new jobs, the Modi rule destroyed existing jobs. Just as we come to power at the Centre, we would fill 22 lakh vacancies [in the Union government departments],” he said.
Janata Dal(S) chief H.D. Deve Gowda, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu, the former Chief Minister and Congress Legislative Party leader Siddaramaiah, KPCC president Dinesh Gundu Rao and others were present.