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Coronavirus lockdown | PM Modi’s address did not match the hype: Congress

Narendra Modi addressing the nation on June 30, 2020.

Narendra Modi addressing the nation on June 30, 2020.  

Implement a NYAY-like scheme, says Rahul Gandhi

Moments after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced his government’s decision to extend the free foodgrains offer until November, the Congress pointed out that the suggestion was first made by party chief Sonia Gandhi in a letter to Mr. Modi.

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The party said on Tuesday that the government should listen to their suggestion of direct cash injection. Former Congress president Rahul Gandhi, in a video appeal, asked the Centre to implement a minimum income guarantee scheme, like the Nyuntam Aay Yojana (NYAY) proposed by his party, for six months to boost demand and kickstart the economy.

Reacting to Mr. Modi’s 17-minute long address, the Congress said it was disappointing, didn’t match the hype that was generated before the speech and the Prime Minister seemed “preoccupied with the idea of Bihar Assembly elections.” The party also questioned Mr. Modi’s claim that the COVID-19 battle was well under control, as the data portrayed a grim picture and India was now the fourth highest in terms of the number of cases.

Also read: Prime Minister Narendra Modi has ‘soft spot’ for China, says Congress

‘No shortage of funds’

Mr. Gandhi said COVID-19 had “destroyed” the economy, and the poor, the workers and the middle and salaried class had been hit the hardest. He said the Centre had turned down the repeated requests to implement a scheme like NYAY citing shortage of funds. “I want to remind the nation that the government has waived crores of rupees in tax of 15 crony capitalists and in the last three months the prices of petrol and diesel have been increased by Narendra Modi government 22 times. There is no shortage of money, the government has ₹3 lakh crore,” he said.

Also read: When will you throw out Chinese troops, Rahul Gandhi asks PM Modi

“Two things were clear from the Prime Minister’s address. One, that this crisis is going to last, at least until November, as he extended the existing schemes. And second, his preoccupation with regard to the Bihar elections, as he was repeatedly referring to Bihar,” said party spokesperson Supriya Shrinate at a press conference.

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Printable version | Jul 6, 2020 8:23:18 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/coronavirus-lockdown-pm-modis-address-did-not-match-the-hype-congress/article31956957.ece

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