Demonetisation: Rajnath dials CMs on law and order

RAF personnel were deployed outside banks in Delhi on Sunday. The scene at Daryaganj.— Photo: V. Sudershan

RAF personnel were deployed outside banks in Delhi on Sunday. The scene at Daryaganj.— Photo: V. Sudershan  

Meets Jaitley and officials to study security issues arising out of cash crunch

Home Minister Rajnath Singh has called chief ministers of at least 10 States to monitor law and order issues following the demonetisation exercise announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on November 8, discontinuing currency notes of Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000 notes.

On November 10, two days after the announcement was made, the first number that Mr. Singh dialled was that of Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar; West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee was the next. Only a day ago, Mr. Kumar, a staunch critic of Mr. Modi, had spoken in support of the demonetisation move.

“The call was made by the Home Minister to extend all possible help from the Centre. Bihar Chief Minister was the first one he spoke to and after that he dialled several other Chief Ministers also,” said an official at Mr. Singh’s office.

The CMs who were dialled mostly comprised the BJP-ruled States of Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Haryana, Assam and Goa. The other States were Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Bihar.

Ms. Banerjee has criticised the Centre’s decision and asked it to withdraw the “hasty decision” and “first put a proper action plan in place.” There was no call made to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, who has called the demonetisation the “biggest scam in recent times.

On Sunday, Mr. Singh held a meeting with Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and officials of the security establishment to analyse the security complications arising out of the cash crunch.

“The main thrust of the meeting was to look for measures to reduce queues outside banks and ATMs. Also discussed were ways to stop the spread of rumours and mischievous news that were only adding to the confusion,” said the official.

The Parliament session begins this week and Mr. Singh who also heads the Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs is to meet several political leadersto ensure smooth functioning of the House.

Nitish Kumar got the first ring followed by Mamata; Kejriwal was, however, not

on the calling list

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