NEW DELHI: While Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been attacking the opposition over national security, the Congress is trying to bring back the focus on unemployment and Modi’s “surgical strike on jobs post demonetisation and Goods and Services Tax as one crore people lost their jobs in 2018.”
“For the first time in history jobs have not been created but destroyed under a Prime Minister and he will be remembered as a ‘job destroyer’. He does different kinds of surgical strikes at the border. You also did a surgical strike on employment in 2018 and 1 crore people were affected by it,” Congress leader Jairam Ramesh said.
Calling Modi’s statement that Mudra loans gave a boost to the employment sector, the Congress said that in 2017-18, close to 90 per cent of the loans had an average size of Rs 24,840, which is completely inadequate for even one job generation, let alone 2-5 as claimed by the Prime Minister. The opposition has also been trying to bring issues like agrarian distress to the fore.
Meanwhile, a voter survey by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) also shows that Indians give priority to employment and basic amenities (like healthcare, drinking water, better roads etc.) above all governance issues (including terrorism and strong defence/military).
Ramesh cited a study by Gujarat Institute of Development Research that found the Mudra scheme has only made banks reclassify their income-generation loans up to the size of a million rupees.
IRCTC on using ‘chowkidar’ on cups
Following reports that paper cups labelled ‘Main bhi chowkidar’ were being used on trains, the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation on Friday said no prior permission was taken by the licensee concerned.
“The space in cups and other materials is used for paid publicity by the licensees.”
PM Modi to address rallies in Assam today
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will on Saturday hit campaign trail in Assam which braces for three-phase Parliamentary elections. During his day-long visit, Modi will address rallies in Northern Assam’s Gohpur and Upper Assam’s Moran.
Gohpur and Moran are towns falling under Tezpur and Dibrugarh constituencies