Modi's flagship projects failed, ruined country's economy: TMC
Kolkata: Taking a dig at the BJP, veteran Trinamool Congress (TMC) leader and party's MP Saugata Roy, on Wednesday said all flagship projects of Modi government had failed and ruined the country's economy.
While addressing a press conference at Trinamool Bhavan, Roy claimed that BJP's lack of planning and foresightedness has hit the economy hard.
Roy said the Make in India project—launched in 2014—has turned into a major flop. "They had promised that they would make India self-reliant and in the manufacturing sector 10 crore jobs would be created. The target of manufacturing sector's share contribution to GDP was fixed at 25 per cent by 2022. Now, the target has been changed to 24 per cent by 2025. No major defence project has started in the past 6 years. For the 2019-20 fiscal, 48 billion dollar trade deficit exists with China. The unemployment rate is at all time high in the past 45 years," he said.
The TMC leader dubbed the Centre's most-endorsed project—PM-Kisan— a major flop. He maintained that at current rates, income of the farmers will not get doubled before 2028. "Seven out of 10 farmers did not receive the entire amount due to them. The scheme proposes to provide Rs 6,000 per annum to small and marginal farmers," he said.
Roy alleged that about 48 per cent of the total beneficiaries of PM-Kisan did not receive any amount and the Centre spent only 41 per cent of the allocated amount. "The BJP criticises Trinamool Congress and blames that the latter has not allowed the scheme to be implemented in Bengal. But, before making such irresponsible comment the leaders should go through the data. Circulating lies about the success of the project will not serve their purpose ultimately," he said.
The callousness and lack of foresight of the Centre are evident in the launching of Bullet train. "It was launched in 2017. It was said that the train would connect Mumbai and Ahmedabad in less than half the time. It would provide jobs and generate revenue. But, $ 3 billion dollar was wasted due to unfair bidding process. Vande Bharat, the fastest train, broke down on first trip. Each km of Bullet train costs Rs 180 crore. But, the dedicated freight corridors—which cost Rs 23 crore— were not given priority," he alleged. The Centre didn't prioritise the construction of a dedicated freight corridor between Dankuni and Ludhiana.
Repeating Mamata Banerjee's statement that GST is 'Great Selfish Tax', he said the CAG report 2018 has cited that "GST has failed to live up to its potential and Rs 2.35 lakh crore shortfall in revenue has been recorded in FY 21. To cover up its faults, the Centre is forcing the states to borrow," he said. Roy said before launching GST, BJP had said it would simplify tax structure and all states would gain equally. "They had claimed that the Centre would compensate the states for any shortfall," Roy added.
Highlighting the Centre's failure further, Roy said the BJP-led government had promised to create 100 smart cities in the country by 2020. "The initiative was launched in June 2015. The deadline for the project was 2020. Now, they have extended the deadline to 2023. In the past 5 years, only 25 per cent work has been completed in this regard. By October 2019, only 30 per cent fund has been released. Out of 81 cities, not a single project has been completed in 34 cities. Most of the projects have been completed in only four states-Karnataka, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh," he added.
Responding to questions on cattle smuggling, the MP alleged that it was the duty of the Border Security Force (BSF) to prevent such incidents. "Whenever Union home minister Amit Shah comes to the state, he goes on to have lunch with farmers or conducts road shows for BJP. However, he doesn't visit the borders to take a stock of the situation or checks whether the BSP is functioning properly or not," the MP said.
Reacting to a question pertaining to BJP's Chief Ministerial candidate for 2021 polls, the MP said the BJP had not yet found a face for the Chief Minister in Bengal as compared to Mamata Banerjee.