NEW DELHI: Former prime minister Manmohan Singh slammed the economic policies of the Narendra Modi -led NDA government, saying demonetisation and a flawed GST have derailed the Indian economy.
At the launch of former Union minister Kapil Sibal’s book ‘Shades of truth: A journey derailed’ on Friday, Singh also targeted the Centre for the widespread farm crisis. Farmers were forced to come out and protest on the streets, he asserted.
“Nothing concrete has been done to bring back the promised billions of dollars allegedly held abroad as black money.”
Singh also expressed concern over the safety of women and Dalits in the country, and noted there was an atmosphere of fear all over.
Former vice-president Hamid Ansari was also present at the book launch. Later, former Union minister P Chidambaram, CPI-M general secretary Sitaram Yechury, LJD patron Sharad Yadav and TMC’s Chandan Mitra took part in a panel discussion on the book.
“I’m afraid that Modi has understood the power of democracy. That is why he is on a mission to destroy it. Attacks on institutions are part of an ideological background,” Yechury said in his observation at the event.
SP chief Akhilesh Yadav and NC patriarch Farooq Abdullah were also present on the occasion.
In a reference to the Congress leaders in poll-bound Madhya Pradesh promising cow protection, Sibal told the audience that there was nothing wrong in protecting cattle.
He recalled that the meeting with yoga guru Ramdev during the anti-graft protests in 2012 was a big mistake by the then UPA government.
“We were told it was a social movement,” Sibal said. Earlier, Sharad Yadav had made observations on the issue.
The former Union minister said the purpose of his book was to present a data-based critique of the Narendra Modi government which had only made hollow promises to the people over the past four years.