Citizens’ Protest Demand Whitepaper on Impacts of Demonetisation
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.
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.