Punjab: Inflation higher when Congress governed at Centre, says Rajnath Singh

CHANDIGARH, May 28 : Inflation was higher whenever the Congress governed at the Centre, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said on Tuesday and asserted that India’s unemployment rate is the lowest among big countries.

Addressing an election rally in Punjab’s Ferozepur parliamentary constituency, Singh also hit out at the Arvind Kejriwal-led dispensation in Delhi, saying liquor shops opened in every street during his tenure.

Attacking the Congress, Singh said the inflation rate was at 2 per cent from 1947-1950, and it “increased to 13.8 per cent during Nehru’s time. From 1964-66, it was over 10 per cent”.

During Morarji Desai’s government, the first thing that was done was to lift restrictions on the movement of farm produce from one state to another, he said.

As a result, inflation, which had reached 30 per cent, came down to 7 per cent, Singh claimed.

“From 1947 to 2022, if you go by the record on inflation, whenever the Congress governed, it increased manifold,” the senior BJP leader said.

When they were voted out of power, inflation came down. “He said the opposition is spreading falsehood on unemployment, inflation. They say inflation has increased during BJP rule. Our prime minister has, to a large extent, controlled inflation,” he said.

Singh was rallying support for the BJP’s Ferozepur candidate Gurmeet Singh Sodhi.

He also upped the ante on unemployment, often used by the opposition parties to target the BJP government at the Centre.

The unemployment rate in India is the lowest among the big countries, Singh asserted.

“In South Africa, the unemployment rate is 32.6, 15.55 in Iraq, 7.9 in Brazil, 7.6 in Italy, 7.2 in France, 5.3 in China and 3.8 in the US. In India, it is 3.2 per cent,” he said.

Yet, the opposition parties spread falsehood, he charged.

Singh also trained his guns on AAP and its supremo Kejriwal.

“In every street, liquor shops were opened in Delhi during Kejriwal’s tenure,” he said.

The defence minister alleged that “goondagardi (hooliganism)”, drugs trade, heroin smuggling is going on in AAP-governed Punjab.

He suggested that the AAP wants the drugs trade to continue so that no one pays attention to its government.

Addressing a poll rally in Jalandhar on May 24, Prime Minister Narendra Modi also hit out at AAP, saying it had promised to end the drugs trade in two months “but, today, drug dealers have been given a free licence in Punjab”.

Singh said the first prerequisite for development is good law and order and pointed to Uttar Pradesh and other BJP-governed states.

“See how fast development is taking place there,” he said.

If the BJP comes to power in Punjab after the next assembly elections, “we will see who indulges in ‘goondagardi'”, he added.

Referring to the Modi government, the defence minister said India’s prestige around the world has increased.

When India speaks on international forums, the entire world listens to what it has to say, he said.

“Our economy reached the fifth spot from 11th and our country is poised to be among the world’s top three economies in just a few years,” he said.

Pointing to the scrapping of Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir, the passing of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, bringing a law against triple talaq, Singh said the BJP does what it promises.

India today leads in digital payments, he said and claimed 46 per cent of the world’s digital payment take place in India.

India is progressing fast, Singh said.

Before 2014, there used to be only two companies manufacturing mobile phones in India. That number has risen to more than 200, he claimed.

The Modi government brought 25 crore people out of poverty, he said. (PTI)