Monetisation will rob quota, assets will go to a few: Kharge

HYDERABAD, TELANGANA, 03/09/2021: Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge, TPCC chief, A. Revanth Reddy, TPCC working president J. Geetha Reddy and TPCC vice-president Mallu Ravi after the media conference on highlight failures of Modi government at Gandhi Bhavan in Hyderabad on Friday, September 03, 2021. Photo: NAGARA GOPAL / The Hindu   | Photo Credit: NAGARA GOPAL

Leader of the Opposition in Rajya Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge sees the National Monetisation Pipeline (NMP) of the Modi government robbing off the hard-earned reservations for Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Backward Classes with the Congress-created assets landing in the hands of a few individuals.

Mr. Kharge said that the intellectuals’ silence on this ‘selling spree’ would harm the nation not just financially but also socially. “This is a danger that is camouflaged in the name of monetisation policy,” he said in Hyderabad. He was addressing the media on Friday as part of the Congress’ nationwide campaign against monetisation.

He said that the mixed economy concept of the first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru created 89 PSUs that changed the very course of development in modern India with assets created and the economy growing and strengthening people financially. “But, the Modi government just wants to blindly sell these precious assets instead of creating more,” he said.

Ridiculing the BJP’s defence on monetisation, he said that the proposed national assets to be monetised were earning ₹3.5 lakh crore for the government. Some units were incurring the loss of ₹45,000 crore but even if that is excluded, the government still earns ₹3 lakh crore. Giving some examples, he said that selling off 26,700 km of roads for ₹1.6 lakh crore, 400 rail stations, and tracks for ₹1.5 lakh crore, power transmission lines worth ₹45,200 crore, and power generation plants worth ₹39,832 crore, will play havoc with the lower and middle classes, as toll taxes, travel fares and power charges are bound to multiply.

Stating that the BJP’s concept was ‘Looto aur Baato’, he said that BJP had to acknowledge that the Congress governments had created these assets over 70 years for them to sell. “They have exposed their charges that the Congress did nothing in the last 70 years,” he added.

Mr. Kharge agreed that Congress governments too, sold some assets but they were few and the loss-making ones only unlike the BJP that is selling ‘strategic’ assets. Moreover, the track record of the Modi government’s selling encouraged monopoly with only a few individuals benefiting than the nation.

The Congress leader also reminded how cities like Hyderabad and Bengaluru burst with economic growth due to the PSUs established here in the last seven decades. “That ecosystem led to lakhs of people gaining financially, socially and educationally because of the strategic assets created,” he said.

He also said that India has a total of 366 PSUs with 9.2 lakh regular employees and 4.98 lakh contractual employees. Railways employ a total of 12.53 lakh employees, and department of posts employs 4.18 lakh employees. If all these companies are sold off, what will be the future of these employees and their families? he asked.

TPCC chief Revanth Reddy, TPCC working president Geetha Reddy, AICC secretaries Sampath Kumar and Ch. Vamshichand Reddy, TPCC campaign committee chairman Madhu Yaskhi Goud, former Deputy CM Damodar Rajanarasimha, senior vice president Mallu Ravi and former MP Ponnam Prabhakar were present.

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Printable version | Oct 23, 2021 11:39:50 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/monetisation-will-rob-quota-assets-will-go-to-a-few-kharge/article36276896.ece

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