'DeMo bold move to stop black money'
United Nations: External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Saturday said that demonetisation was a "courageous" decision taken by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to challenge black money, one of the by-products of corruption. Prime Minister Modi on November 8, 2016, demonetised Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes in a bid to clamp down on black money, fake currency menace, terror funding and corruption.
"Demonetisation was a courageous decision to challenge one of the by-products of corruption, the 'black money' that disappeared from circulation," Swaraj said in her address to the 72nd session of the United Nations General Assembly here. She also said India has passed the Goods and Services Tax (GST) legislation, through which there is one-tax across the country, without the untidy and punishing system of multiple taxes under differing categories in different parts of India.
"Our 'Save the girl, Educate the girl' campaign is reducing gender inequality. The 'Clean India' programme is generating what can only be described as a revolutionary change in social attitudes and habits," she said. India, she said, has displayed the courage and leadership to take tough decisions which have launched the interlinked process of sustainable development.
Swaraj said that the complete eradication of poverty is the most important priority of the present government. "There are two ways of addressing the curse of poverty. The traditional method is through incremental levels of aid and hand-holding," she noted.
"But our Prime Minister Narendra Modi has chosen the more radical route, through economic empowerment. The poor are not helpless; we have merely denied them opportunity. We are eliminating poverty by investing in the poor. We are turning them from job-seekers into job-providers," Swaraj said. She said that all economic programmes — Jan Dhan, Mudra, Ujjwala, Skill India, Digital India, Clean India, Start-Up India and Stand-Up India — have a principal purpose, the empowerment of the poor. "The Jan Dhan plan must surely count as the world's largest financial inclusion scheme," she said.