Leaders of the Socialist Unity Centre of India (Communist) leaders on Monday said they would attend the all-party meeting if convened by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to protest against the hasty and arbitrary decision of demonetisation by the Centre.
SUCI supporters on Monday burnt the effigy of Prime Minister Narendra Modi at Esplanade. They were protesting against the draconian decision to demonetise Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes that caused untold misery to millions of common people. The party supporters will take out rallies for next three days and pledged to stand by the common people.
SUCI leaders said: “If Mamata Banerjee convened an all-party meeting to protest against the arbitrary decision of the Centre, SUCI will take part in the meeting. This is a national crisis and all the political parties should unite and raise their voices against the Centre.”
Meanwhile, West Bengal Pradesh Congress Committee will launch a movement against the Centre’s decision. Congress MP Pradip Bhattacharya said it was unfortunate that such a major decision was taken without making any prior arrangement. “After the decision was announced by the Prime Minister on Tuesday night, people are running from one ATM to another to withdraw money to meet their daily expenses. Most of the ATMs are without cash. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said it would take at least another fortnight to normalise the situation but the period is quite long. The Centre should have thought about the consequences.”
He said that Modi was making emotional speeches to divert the attention of the people. But he should come out with a statement that in the past two years how many people with black money had been arrested.
Also, he should immediately publish the names of big companies who have not repaid bank loans. He alleged that despite assurances, the Centre failed to bring back black money deposited in the banks abroad.
Veteran Congress leader Somen Mitra said people want “not emotion but decision from the Prime Minister.” He maintained that never in the past, the common people had to face such a crisis.
“Hospitals are returning people so are medicine shops and petrol pumps. The situation is turning from bad to worse and no one knows when it will improve. There will be long queues of people in front of banks from tomorrow as people have exhausted the little money which they withdrew from banks,” Mitra said.
Mitra added that Congress workers have been asked to stand by the common people.