MUMBAI: The Shiv Sena today said the move to probe deposits of government employees post demonetisation is a mere "eyewash" and asked the government to focus on "basic questions" instead of using "chloroform on people" and diverting their attention.
The CVC had said recently that the deposits of scrapped currency notes made by central government employees post demonetisation will be probed by the anti-corruption watchdog.
"Even if one agrees that the government has the right to keep an eye or conduct an inquiry, what will be the result of such inquiries? The move is only aimed at leaving a sword hanging over government employees," an editorial in Sena mouthpiece 'Saamana' said.
"What all measures will the government take to hide the failures of demonetisation?" it asked.
"According to the RBI, 99 per cent of the demonetised currency came back into the system. Out of Rs 15.44 lakh crore in the market, the RBI received Rs 15.28 lakh crore indicating that demonetisation was a failure," it said.
"In order to divert peoples' attention, the government spoke about a spike in cashless transactions and a shift towards digital economy. But the truth was that people were forced to go cashless then as there was no currency in circulation," it said.
"When the currency notes did come back, cashless and online transactions took a back seat and once again people started using cash. The RBI has now pegged cashless and online transactions at less than 17 per cent," it said.
The Sena said that recently the government threatened to inquire into the funds deposited in Jan Dhan accounts and that the Income Tax would keep a watch on bank transactions.
"The threat is probing government employees' deposits. All this is being done to divert attention from government's failures," it said.
The Sena alleged that the government's "tactic of keeping a watch on people is to hypnotise people and keep them under fear."
"Those who alleged that Indira Gandhi, during the Emergency, kept a watch on people who are in power now. Can we say the same is happening today as well. The first part of this exercise is probing government employees' deposits," it said.
Instead of "using chloroform" on people and diverting their attention, the government should focus on the basic questions, the Sena said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had on November 8 last year announced the scrapping of old Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes.
Citizens were provided a limited time window to deposit such notes in their bank accounts.
The Shiv Sena yesterday said it will soon take a decision on its continuance in the BJP-led government in Maharashtra.