NEW DELHI : Accusing the Narendra Modi government of "peddling lies and celebrating non-performance, propaganda and platitudes", the Congress on Friday flayed the ruling BJP-led NDA for splurging Rs 2,000 crore on celebrating its "three years of failure".
Addressing the media on "Three failed years of BJP government" here, Congress MP and former Union Minister Kamal Nath "credited" the Modi government for the "shameful record" of highest farmer suicides and demanded a white paper on its employment strategy.
"Bravado, rhetoric and hyperbole are the hallmark of the years of Modi government. Peddling lies and celebrating non-performance, propaganda and platitude are its recognition," Nath said.
"When the economy is in shambles, 35 farmers are committing suicide daily and unemployment is rising, this government is spending Rs 2,000 crore on celebrations of its three years," he said.
"No government in the country's history has spent so much on publicity like this government. The amount spent on the publicity of schemes is so exorbitant that it negates the benefits of these schemes," claimed Nath.
Referring to key economic sectors and indicators, Nath enumerated the "failures" of the Modi government.
"Thanks to this government, employment is at a 50-year low and lowest in the last seven years."
"Against Modi's promise of two crore jobs annually, only 1.35 lakh jobs were created in 2015. We need to create over 34 crore jobs by 2028, but what is the state of domestic investment and bank credit? Both are at their historic lowest," the former Minister added.
The party demanded to know the government's plans to counter the growing joblessness.
"The IT sector is facing joblessness and will be losing 20,000 jobs annually. We want to know the government's plans to counter disruption in employment creation due to innovation in technology."
"We demand a white paper on the government's employment strategy. The country is not interested in speeches and assurances, we want this government to come out with hard facts on how it plans to create jobs for the next two years," he said.
Talking about the agrarian distress, Nath said: "Today India boasts of a shameful record of 35 farmers committing suicide daily. No country, not even the least developed countries have this shameful record. The figure of farmer suicides in 2016-17 is expected to be 16,000. This is the credit and achievement of this government!"
He said that agricultural growth has come down to 1.3 per cent, which was "one of the lowest", and accused the government of rendering farmers debt-trapped.
"The farmers today are left at the mercy of traders. Today the farmers are debt-trapped and all the initiatives are nothing but sham," he said.
Pointing to complex procedures and rules, Nath claimed the farmers' insurance policies were actually benefiting companies instead of the farmers.
"While farmers paid premiums to the tune of Rs 17,185 crore for kharif crops in 2016, only 3.9 crore farmers received benefits amounting to Rs 6,808 crore. This scheme, therefore, should be called the 'Insurance Company Benefits' scheme because the companies made a profit of over Rs 10,000 crore," he said.
Nath also questioned the government's motive of writing off corporates loans of over "Rs 1.54 lakh crore" but not extending the same benefits to debt-ridden farmers.
On Prime Minister Modi's November 8 move to demonetise Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 notes, Nath said the country was yet to know about its benefits.
"The government has still no record of the amount of black money and counterfeit notes recovered. People suffered so much hardships in the hope to see black money being removed, but where is the result?" he asked.
"The future of the country is dark both from the economic and social point of view. The country is on the verge of seeing strifes," he added.