Former prime minister Manmohan Singh on Monday attacked Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led NDA government at the Centre for running the country on their “whims and fancies”. In an all-out attack on the central government, Manmohan Singh claimed that the Modi government has “reversed the success of the UPA government”.
In a scathing attack on PM Modi, he said, "No Prime Minister in our country has used the Office of the Prime Minister to say things about his opponent that Mr Modi has been doing day in and day out. It doesn't behove a Prime Minister to stoop so low and it is not good for the country as a whole as well."
Pointing that economic policies of a government have impact on lives of common people, the former prime minister said that policies of Prime Minister Modi and his government have “resulted in massive losses for the country”.
“The UPA government delivered an average growth rate of 7.8 per cent despite economic turmoil across the world during that period. The NDA government has lesser growth rate despite favourable international conditions,” said Manmohan Singh.
Referring to “avoidable blunders of demonetisation and hasty implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST)”, the veteran Congress leader said that the government had hit small and micro industries and resulted in loss of tens of thousands of jobs across the country.
Cautioning the Modi government over its economic policies, Singh said, “True leadership creates opportunities, and not destroys them. Prime Minister Modi just came up with catchy words like Amrut and smart city, which have underperformed drastically.”
He further pointed to petrol and diesel prices touching record highs, saying that the prices of fuels have touched historic high despite lower crude oil prices internationally. He blamed “excessive excise taxes” imposed by the NDA government, saying, “Modi government is punishing people”.
“Since the present government assumed power, crude oil prices have declined by 67 per cent, but prices of both petrol and diesel have increased and reached record high,” said the former prime minister.
Singh also talked about the cultural diversity of the country and issued an advice for Prime Minister Modi without naming him. He said, “No one person can claim to the repository of all wisdom”.
The former prime minister also lashed out at the central government over recent scams in banking sector, involving big public sector banks like Punjab National Bank. “Bank frauds have increased and perpetrators have fled with immunity,” said Singh, adding that the Modi government was “slowly eroding the trust of common people in banking system”.
“The government is not doing its job. Instead of taking prompt action, it is providing excuses and peddling controversy theories,” said the Congress leader.
Former prime minister Singh made the remarks while addressing a press conference in Bengaluru. He is visiting Bengaluru to campaign for the Congress party ahead of Karnataka Assembly elections, polling for which would be held on May 12 and results will be declared on May 15.