NDA govt move to tweak NREGA reflects 'political vendetta': Congress

Congress on Friday charged that the NDA government was driven by "political vendetta" in devising changes to the labour to materials ratio for the rural job scheme and going for the de-control of the prices of life-saving drugs.

PTI| Last Updated: Oct 11, 2014, 00:29 AM IST

New Delhi: Congress on Friday charged that the NDA government was driven by "political vendetta" in devising changes to the labour to materials ratio for the rural job scheme and going for the de-control of the prices of life-saving drugs.

The party alleged that the Narendra Modi government was "undermining and sabotaging" public interest through its approach and also slammed the Prime Minister over India's handling of the ceasefire violations by Pakistan.

On the MGNREGA and drug-pricing issues, Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi said, "It is unfortunate that politics has reached such low levels and got debased so much... BJP is undermining and sabotaging the public interest programme.

"We may have done it but when public interest is involved, you cannot do it."

Maintaining that the wage component was the heart and soul of the job scheme, Singhvi said that the government's decision to reduce the wage component would directly lead to job cuts. He said that the move was being mulled despite opposition by NGOs and support for the existing module of the scheme.

Alleging it was being done "purely for cheap political gains" and to show "antagonism and anger" towards the measures taken by the previous Congress-led UPA regime, Singhvi said that the move needs to be deprecated.

On the pharma drug pricing issue, he said, "How is it possible for a country like India, which is so poor and has diverse needs, to do so. The entire government effort should be to widen the ambit of price control for life saving drugs."

He alleged that the NDA government had gone for the de-control just before Modi's US visit and after "completely jettisoning and abandoning India's interest".

He averred that it was not proper for the NDA government to have withdrawn it "merely because UPA had in 2012 expanded the ambit" of drug regulation. The approach, he charged, "smacks of cheap political vendetta".

Regarding the violation of the ceasefire from across the border in Jammu and Kashmir, Congress sought to remind Modi of his attacks earlier on the UPA government whenever such incidents took place.

"Selective amnesia is a very bad disease. Do to others what you want others to do to you. Modi should have realised that before making such comments," Singhvi said.