At a time when the BJP is hailing the demonetization of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 bank notes as a major step towards curbing black money, and trying hard to allay apprehensions of the people over the surprise move, a video from last year has surfaced online to haunt it, challenging its own claims about a crackdown on unaccounted money flow.
In the video from January 2014, a few months before the Modi government came to power, BJP leader Meenakshi Lekhi is seen slamming the Congress-led UPA government over its move to withdraw all rupees printed before 2005.
Calling the then finance ministry's move to demonetize the notes a 'gimmick', Lekhi said the measure was strongly anti-poor.
"The latest gimmick of the finance ministry to demonetize the notes, printed before 2005, is an attempt to obfuscate the issue of black money stashed outside the country... This measure is anti-poor. The 'aam aurats' and the 'aadmis' -- those who are illiterate and have no access to banking facilities will be the ones to be hit by such diversionary measures," she said at a press meet.
"People with small savings and no bank accounts will be targeted. The present scheme does nothing to remove black money from circulation," she added, detailing the plight of the poor and downtrodden.
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Ironically, all that Lekhi said then has become almost true, though her own party is at the receiving end now.
As reports pour in about the confusion across the country following demonetization, taking its toll on the commoners, many have even started calling Lekhi's words prophetic.
Lekhi's apparent prediction, including about the possible threat of middlemen cheating the illiterate, have now turned out to be self-critical. She had also said the demonetization would not affect those who stashed their money in Swiss banks illegally -- a charge the Modi government also has to answer.
The delay in releasing new notes through banks and reopening ATM counters have put the common man in deep trouble. The apparent failure in the banking sector, allegedly due to lack of proper planning to address the inevitable crisis, have made even those who supported the demonetization in the beginning, do a rethink.