Indian Opposition Party Takes a Dig at Modi Government Over Privatisation, Hike in Fuel Prices
11:36 GMT 11.10.2021 (Updated: 13:36 GMT 06.08.2022)
© REUTERS / FRANCIS MASCARENHASSupporters of opposition political parties shout slogans during a Maharashtra statewide strike, after people were killed when a car linked to a federal minister ran over farmers protesting against controversial farm laws in the Uttar Pradesh state earlier this month, on a street in Mumbai, India October 11, 2021
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led Indian government has been receiving criticism over increasing fuel prices in the country. The main opposition party Congress on several occasions has slammed Prime Minister Narendra Modi over record-high fuel costs.
India's main opposition party, Congress, on Monday took a dig at the Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government over its privatisation plan and the continuous spike in fuel prices in the country.
Congress General Secretary Randeep Surjewala in three different tweets targeted the federal government.
In a tweet in Hindi, he shared a news clip that claimed nine companies owned by big conglomerates like the Tatas, Adanis, and others have shown interest in purchasing the electricity department of Chandigarh, the twin capital city of the states of Punjab and Haryana.
"PM Modi is giving freebies and whoever intends to benefit, just grab it. What is the justification for selling the profit-making Government Electricity Department of Chandigarh through a bid? Will anyone ask? Is there any answer to it?"
In another tweet, he shared a news item with the headline "Milk Trade Takes a Sour Turn for Farmers".
In his third tweet, the Congress general secretary shared a cartoon detailing a conversation between a patient and a doctor in which the party takes a dig at the ongoing inflation, unemployment, and increased fuel prices in the country.
Congress has been critical of the federal government's plan about the privatisation of public sector units. It earlier accused the Narendra Modi government of "selling the crown jewels of the country".
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said that the government's ambitious monetisation of public assets scheme is an attempt "to create monopolies" in critical areas that would cut down more job opportunities and adversely affect "small and medium businesses".
"We are not against privatisation. Our (UPA government's) privatisation had a logic, and there was no privatisation of strategic industry such as the railways. All this privatisation is for creating monopolies. You know who owns ports and [is] getting airports", he said.
In February of this year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a strong pitch for the privatisation of public sector units, saying that the government has "no business being in business". He had said that the federal government is following the mantra of "monetise and modernise".
Along the same lines, Federal Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in August launched the National Monetisation Pipeline (NMP). It aims to create a virtuous cycle of "develop, commission, monetise, and invest" in India's national infrastructure.
On the other hand, the nation's main opposition party has organised several nationwide protests against the spiralling fuel prices. The prices of petrol and diesel have been increasing in the country for almost a week, reaching a record high.