Demonetisation Fiasco: Time For Political Parties To Step Up


The cat is out of the bag. The data released by Reserve Bank of India (RBI) proves that as was predicted Narendra Modi’s demonetisation was a ‘monumental disaster’. The data shows that 99 % of the demonetised currencies returned to the system. Of the 15.44 lakh crore demonetised money, 15.28 lakh crore returned to the banks. A simple question rises, why was this exercise that killed almost 200 people directly, that put 1.5 million people out of job, that wrecked the informal sector which employs largest number of people? The government must answer NOW.


In a dramatic address to the nation on November 8, 2016, Prime Miniter Narendra Modi said,

“To break the grip of corruption and black money, we have decided that the 500 rupee and 1,000 rupee currency notes presently in use will no longer be legal tender from midnight tonight, that is 8th November 2016”.

Everybody knows the banning of notes didn’t affect the level of corruption in any manner. Well known German business journalist Dr. Norbert Haering  has suggested that ‘Demonetisation’ itself may be an act of corruption. Author F. William Engdahl also supports this argument.

As for black money, the data released by RBI proves otherwise. Of the 1% money that didn’t return there are several tales to be told.

The News Minute reported on August 18, 2017

Seventy-six-year-old Sathi Bai, who made headlines in January for not having heard about the Centre’s demonetisation, passed away at Varapuzha in Ernakulam district on Thursday night. Sathi, who had stashed away Rs 4 lakh in old currency notes, realised to her horror in January that her money was no longer legal tender. Despite efforts, she was unable to convert her old notes until her last breath.

Eminent Journalist Madhusree Mukherjee wrote another tale on Facebook

The report is, 99% of demonetised money got turned in. I don’t know how that happened, because we all know people who could not change their cash in time.

I have a cousin, a lecturer in history. She does not have a permanent job, but lives from contract to contract, traveling long distances by bus or train to teach a course here, a course there, in different colleges. It’s extremely hard and poorly paid work, and she’s close to 60 now. She never married, but spent her entire life taking care of her ageing parents. Her father died several years back, and her mother a little more than a year ago.

For the longest time, she did not look through her mother’s saris. It was too painful. This summer, though, she thought she should spread them out to dry in the sun. The sun kills insects that might eat the fabric. Hidden in her mother’s saris she found a small trunk with a lakh of rupees in old 500-rupee notes. So much love, forethought, self-sacrifice and deprivation went into those precious savings! So many times they could have eaten better, dressed better, bought new things instead of having old ones repaired time and time again, taken a taxi instead of a packed, sweltering bus!

All turned into dust, thanks to the whim of a psychopath.

Of the 1 % unaccounted for money, a lot may by lying  in the old almarahs of old or dead people or as in the case of Sathi Bai, people who just couldn’t comprehend the whole exercise.

The black money theory and the corruption theory falls flat on its face.

While the chaos of demonetisation was going on, many readers of Countercurrents who are from outside India asked why aren’t Indian people angry?

Perhaps, they believed the lies that Modi told. They really hoped that all black money will come out and corruption will end. They went through the hardships hoping for a better tomorrow. They all have been cheated.

Since the public mood was not conducive, the political parties too kept silent. Now is the time for political parties to come out and seek an explanation from the Prime Minister for wrecking the country’s economy and for people suffering and even deaths.

Yesterday, I wrote on Facebook,

“The opposition parties should demand an apology from the Modi government for demonetisation and demand compensation for the victims of the dead directly linked to demoentisation”

Political activist Jagdish Chandra wrote back “Apology! Not enough. We must demand Modi’s resignation”.

When India was going through the hell of demonetisation, Modi had said, Give me 50 days, or Burn me alive”.


Eminent ecologist S Faizi wrote on Facebook,

I dont want to burn Modi alive as he has granted me permission as a citizen (see that is the only language these men and women from the gutter can transact in; remember what the edn minister said in the parliament: I shall cut my head and place before your feet- to mayavati).

I dont want him to commit self immolation either. What I want as citizen is a legitimate process of the law to punish him for waging a de facto war against the country. Whoever comes to power after the 2019 elections shd establish a Truth Commission to investigate the crimes against the country committed by the Modi regime and duly punish the perpetrators. So that a Modi shall never be repeated in India. And a commission to reverse the damages caused to India’s cultural, educational and scientific institutions by the Modi regime.

Now is the time for opposition parties to act. They must at least,

  1. Seek resignation of Modi as Jagdish Chandra suggested
  2. A Truth Commission as S Faizi suggested
  3. An apology and compensation for the dead as I suggested.

In any case, it’s time for political parties in the opposition to step up the campaign against Narendra Modi and his coteries for wrecking India. There should be a massive movement of people against this corrupt government for wrecking people’s lives and livelihoods.

Binu Mathew is the editor of He can be reached at [email protected]

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