Launching a scathing attack on the BJP-led government over the handling of the India economy, former finance minister P Chidambaram on Sunday said the number of people below poverty line went up during the NDA rule.
He also took potshots at the RBI over demonetisation and the time the top bank took to count the currency notes that returned to the system post note ban.
"Demonetisation was a big lie. RBI is still counting and won't tell us how much money has come back. I would like to advice the RBI Governor to go to Tirupati and get the hundi collectors. They count money faster than the RBI," he said at the third and last day of the 84th Congress Plenary Session in Delhi.
Chidambaram said the Prime Minister Modi-led government had inherited a strong economy, adding that the number of people below poverty line went up during the BJP rule.
"It's the biggest achievement of Dr Manmohan Singh that 14 Crore people were listed out of poverty. BJP govt pushed people into poverty. Number of people below poverty line went up. It's the greatest disservice BJP govt did to people of India," he added.
"The current phase of economic growth started in 1990s when Rajiv Gandhi sowed seeds of liberalisation. This gained momentum under Dr Manmohan Singh. Whatever the BJP, the NDA may say, records speak for itself," Chidambaram further said.
Former prime minister Dr Manmohan Singh
Earlier in the plenary session, former prime minister Manmohan Singh, a renowned economist himself, lashed out at the NDA government on the issue of GDP growth.
"The BJP Govt. made tall promises. PM Modi himself said that his Govt will double farmers' income. For that, a growth rate of 12% per annum is necessary which is unthinkable in the current scenario," he said.
Congress leader Anand Sharma also spoke at the plenary session and said Modi government had disrupted India's foreign policy.
"The Prime Minister is carried away by his own propaganda. Today it is a matter of concern that we have mismanaged our relations with major capitals of the world, with major strategic partners and our immediate neighborhood," Sharma said.
84th Congress Plenary Session
On Saturday, Sonia Gandhi launched a scathing attack against the Narendra Modi-led NDA government, calling it "arrogant". Accusing the saffron party of dividing the nation along the lines of religion and caste, Rahul Gandhi said only his party can unite the country.
Today is the third day of Indian National Congress 84th Plenary Session. The session, which is a first since Gandhi's elevation to the presidential post, is called 'Change is now' and is aimed at projecting young faces of the party at the forefront.
(Images credit - Twitter/@INCIndia)