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Chidambaram's dig at Modi for 'pakoda' remark triggers BJP-Congress verbal war

P. Chidambaram and Narendra Modi. File   | Photo Credit: PTI

Former Union Finance Minister P. Chidambaram’s dig at Prime Minister Narendra Modi for claiming that people selling pakodas could also be considered employed triggered a war of words between the BJP and the Congress.

“Even selling pakodas is a ‘job’, said the PM. By that logic, even begging is a job. Let’s count poor or disabled persons who are forced to beg for a living as ‘employed’ people,” Mr. Chidambaram said on Sunday.

The BJP responded by saying that the former Finance Minister had insulted the poor.

“The Congress party insults poor and aspirational Indians again ... Comparing livelihood means of millions of hard-working Indians from humble background to begging betrays Congress party’s perpetual disdain for the poor,” the ruling party said on Twitter.

The BJP said the Congress had not come to terms with the Prime Minister’s humble beginning of being a tea seller.

Mr. Chidambaram countered by saying, “BJP is the master of distortion and deception. Selling pakodas is honourable self-employment for the poor but that cannot be counted as a job.”

“The BJP should answer the question how many certain, regular and reasonably secure jobs were created in the last three years,” he said.

In a series of tweets earlier, the former Finance Minister said the debate on jobs should make a distinction between a job and self-employment.

“A ‘job’ is certain, regular and reasonably secure. We want to know how many such jobs have been created,” he said. The reality of the last three years is “modest jobless growth”.

He also challenged government contention that Mudra or micro loans can create regular jobs.


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Printable version | Jul 29, 2021 4:22:31 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/pakoda-remark-chidambaram-takes-a-dig-at-modi/article22545324.ece

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