Congress general secretaries Ajay Maken and Randeep Surjewala held a press conference in Delhi to present the “book” titled “8 Saal, 8 Chhal, Bhajpa Sarkar Vifal”, highlighting the Centre’s “failures and performance” in respect to economy, foreign policy, communal harmony and inflation. Maken said each failure is bigger than the other, be it inflation or farmer issues.
The report card recounted the “government’s failures” in eight years under eight broad subheads:
The Congress report card started with accusing the government of “poisoning” the common man’s life with rising inflation despite “garnering votes by lying about achhe din (better days). It gave an example when in April 2022, the wholesale inflation was at a 30-year high of 15.08 per cent and in May 2022, the retail inflation was at eight-year high of 7.8 per cent. The report card also compared the prices of edible items on April 1, 2014 with May 20, 2022, besides details about the rise in fuel charges.
‘Youngest country forced into joblessness and illiteracy’
The report card says India’s average age is 28 but the Modi government is “changing the demographic dividend to demographic disaster”. “Unemployment is the biggest helplessness of India’s youth who have skills and enthusiasm but no job.”
Giving data, the report card said the unemployment rate is at a “high of 7.9 per cent”.
The report card also took up the issue of demonetisation when “over 50 lakh people lost jobs”.
‘Economy at its lowest’
The report card said the gross domestic product touched its “new low” in the last eight years. It compared the GDP-rise rate during its UPA rule from 2004-05 to 2013-14 when it was 8.36 % with the NDA’s rule from 2014-15 to 2020-21 years when it fell to 4.75%. The Congress said Indian rupee is the worst performer in Asia when the currency is witnessing its steepest fall in 75 years. “In May 2022, rupee witnessed its steepest fall of Rs 77.81 per American dollar.”
‘Earning didn’t double but pains increased 100-fold’
The Congress accused the government of showing its “anti-farmer” stand soon after coming to power. “It stopped the bonus of Rs 150 crore on paddy and wheat as soon as June 2014. Then it brought three laws to usurp the land of the farmers.”
It alleged that the PM Fasal Bima Yojana was meant for the private insurance companies to “loot” the farmers.
‘Used Indian defence force’s name to garner vote’
It said the defence ministry told the Parliament on December 13, 2021 that there are 1,22,555 vacancies in the India defence forces, 10,000 of soldiers. The Congress also raked up the ECHS issue of the defence personnel, tax on disability pension and so on.
‘Politics of hate’
The Congress report card highlighted concerns over communal harmony and polarisation in the country as several states have seen unrest in the recent months. “Now development and infrastructure are not the issues of the BJP during elections but issues like 80:20, burial grounds, loudspeaker, bulldozer, temples, changing names of roads and so on.” It gave examples of the Delhi riot in 2020 when 53 people were killed.
‘Left backward classes, SC, ST, OBC behind’
The Congress also accused the government of ending the SC/ST sub-plan. “There is not a single Dalit CM in the states ruled by the BJP.”
It gave some examples where the Centre has cut sums for the welfare schemes involving the SCs, STs and Dalits like cutting the SC pre-matric scholarship scheme worth Rs 725 by 40 % to Rs 500 crore.
‘Indian security at risk’
Finally, it raked up the issue of security, saying India’s demographic integrity is being attacked by China, which has captured a number of areas in Ladakh but the “Modi government is silent”. “China has captured Gogra and Hotspring in Ladakh. It has build a sort of village in Arunachal Pradesh but the Modi government has failed to protect the country.”
The BJP government will complete its eight years at the Centre, which the party plans to celebrate from May 30 to June 14 on a grand scale across the country by holding various events.