100 Days of Demonetisation Observed with Protests:

Citizens’ Protest Demand Whitepaper on Impacts of Demonetisation

20.02.2017 09:31:44 -

( - 100 Days of Demonetisation Observed with Protests:

February 20, 2017

Citizens’ Protest Demand Whitepaper on Impacts of Demonetisation: Reserve Bank has enhanced the cash withdrawal limit from Savings Bank Account to 50,000 rupees from the existing 24,000 rupees from today. RBI has also said that all limits on cash withdrawals from Savings Bank Account will be withdrawn from 13th of next



New Delhi: “Demonetisation policy has been proved to be a disaster for the people”, D Raja, Rajya Sabha MP and Communist Party of India leader said at a Citizens’ March and Protest today at Jantar Mantar. Reserve Bank Governor Urjit Patel yesterday said India's economic growth will make a sharp recovery following the recall of old 500 and 1,000 rupee notes. In an interview to CNBC-TV18, Mr Patel made a strong case for continuing with globalisation, even in the face of a potential shift to trade protectionism under US President Donald Trump, as India has benefited from open trade. He said, the remonetisation has happened at a fast pace and that was part of the plan.

RBI last week lowered economic growth projection for the current fiscal to 6.9 per cent from the previously estimated 7.1 per cent, but saw it bouncing back in a big way to 7.4 per cent in 2017-18. Mr Patel said, the benefit of junking 86 per cent of currency in circulation will take time to fully play out and needs more work to ensure they are lasting.

Asked when India could achieve 9 per cent GDP growth, he said it is difficult to predict sustainable growth rates. The six-member monetary policy committee (MPC) headed by Patel had last week kept interest rates unchanged at 6.25 per cent for the second straight meeting and changed policy stance to neutral from accommodative.

People from different walks of life, representatives of various people’s movements, civil society groups, trade unions and political parties protested on the 100th day of demonetisation questioning the motive and implementation and highlighting the colossal damage that has caused to the lives and livelihood of common people, while the ones with the black-money managed an easy escape.

Congress Party veteran and former Union Minister Mani Shankar Aiyar, senior Communist Party of India (Marxist) Nilopal Basu, leader of National Federation for Indian Women Annie Raja, General Secretary of All India Kisan Sabha Hannan Molla, Vice President of All India Bank Officers Association Ravinder Gupta, leader of New Trade Union Initiative Gautam Modi were some of the prominent political and trade union leaders who spoke at the protest.
“Not only did Prime Minister Modi fail to bring black money back, or depositing Rs. 15 lakh in every bank account, as promised during elections, he snatched whatever little people had as savings through demonetization”, Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar said.

“Note ban devastated the lives of the poor and unorganised sector, while the rich lose nothing”, CPI (M) leader Nilopal Basu said.

“With 98% of demonetised currency returning to the banks, the said objectives of the demonetisation failed, while the miseries of common people, and the bank employees who had to face the wrath of distressed people kept growing”, Ravinder Gupta from Bank Officers Association.

Large number of people from Katputli colony, which is under the threat of demolition, and whose livelihoods have been severely hit because of demonetisation turned out in large numbers for the protest. Adding insult to injury to their lives, while the demonetisation left them nearly jobless, the threat of forced eviction, without adequate rehabilitation has put them in a precarious condition. Political party leaders extended support to their struggle.

Domestic Workers Union, Railway Mazdoor Union, Delhi Young Artists Forum, Safai karamchari Union, Jhugi Jhopdi Union, Construction Workers Union and farmers affected by industrialization in Kanjhawala in the outskirts of Delhi were some of the prominent people’s movements protested today.

People protested vehemently said, we, the common people of India, need people oriented governance and not corporate-driven economic emergency. We reject the economic and political premises of demonetization and affirm that a transparent and accountable government is required to replace the current logic of ‘we know what is good for the people’. We reject in totality the authoritarian drive to push the UID/Aadhar scheme down people’s throats and demand political and judicial intervention to stop the drive immediately. We demand that the government produce a white paper on the impacts of demonetization on people’s lives and livelihoods and compensate for the lives and livelihoods. We demand that the corporate-driven ‘cashless’ economy plan be immediately withdrawn.

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