NEW DELHI: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday said the lockdown was not an attack on coronavirus but on the poor people and proved to be a “death sentence” for the unorganised sector as it “finished” jobs and small businesses.
Everyone should stand against the attack, he said. “The lockdown was not an attack on corona. The lockdown was an attack on the poor of India. It was an attack on the future of our youth,” Gandhi said in a video series on the lockdown triggered by the coronavirus pandemic.
“The lockdown was an attack on labourers, farmers and small shopkeepers. It was an attack on our unorganised sector. We have to understand this. We all have to stand against this attack,” he said. “Whatever was done in the name of Corona was the third attack on the unorganised sector,” he also said.
This is the fourth part of the video series launched by the former Congress president on the economy and the lockdown. “The sudden lockdown proved to be a death sentence for the unorganized class. The promise was to finish corona in 21 days, but instead finished crores of jobs and small industries. Watch this video to know Modi Ji’s anti-people ‘disaster plan’,” he said in a tweet in Hindi along with the video that was shared on his social media platforms.
The former Congress chief said the poor, working in small and medium businesses, are daily wage earners and eat with what they earn everyday.
“When you announced a lockdown without a notice, you launched an attack on them,” he said. Gandhi said the prime minister said the fight will be for 21 days, but broke the backbone of the unorganized sector in 21 days.
When it was time to open after the lockdown, the Congress party told the government several times that helping the poor is essential, he said, noting that a scheme like NYAY should have been implemented and money directly deposited in their bank accounts. “But they didn’t do it.”
“We suggested that for small and medium businesses, you should prepare a package. They need to be saved. Without this money they will not be able to survive, but the government did nothing,” the Congress leader said. “Instead, the government waived off taxes worth lakhs of crores of the richest 15-20 people,” he charged.
The Congress leader has been attacking the government over its handling of the COVID-19 situation and has alleged that the lockdown was a failure as it did not have the desired effect.