Amid opposition’s outrage against the demonetisation move, Robert Vadra on Monday lashed out at the government with a Facebook post calling Centre ‘desperate’, leading it to compound the note-ban ‘blunder’ with more and egregious blunders.
Referring to another note ban-related latest crisis, with petrol pump owners, Congress chief Sonia Gandhi’s son-in-law, suggested the government is acting unilaterally without consulting or coordinating with agencies and organisations that are stakeholders.
“The Govt seems to have reached its levels of desperation to overcome the initial blunder it created, through the unplanned and unthought (sic) process of demonetisation,” Vadra wrote in his Facebook post.
With regard to the Centre’s stated aims of getting India to adopt a cashless
s economy, Vadra said that when the common man didn’t immediately jump on the digital bandwagon, the government “offered sops to push people to use Debit/Credit cards.”
After sops and a degree of coercion forced people to attempt more digital transactions, the government again failed, as is exemplified in the latest fracas with petrol pumps,” Vadra said. “…when people started using more of cashless means, now lack of coordination with banks and their policies is forcing petrol pump owners to adopt these drastic steps,” Vadra said.
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Vadra talked about petrol pumps yesterday threatening to refuse card payments for fuel. The owners are miffed that banks planned to charge a 1% transaction fee on card and debit payments at petrol pumps from today. To promote transactions, the government had waived these fees until today. While that move has been deferred after last-minute negotiations, it has not been resolved, not by any means.
“What was the whole meaning to offer 0.75 % discount and then the banks start charging MDR (Merchant Deposit Rate, or transaction fee) 1% from petrol pumps ? I dont see any rational, do you? (sic),” Vadra said.
In a Facebook post last month, Vadra accused the Centre of of “experimenting on us, to try and prove itself correct” – after it scrapped R 500 and Rs 1,000 notes – and of constantly changing the rules.