In a harsh criticism of Prime Minister Narendra Modi over demonetisation, All India Majlis-e-Ittehad-ul Muslimeen (AIMIM) chief Asaduddin Owaisi on 31 August said that it was because of the former's 'impulsive' decision that people were pushed into distress and the country lost 2 per cent GDP.
Speaking to ANI, Owaisi termed demonetisation as a "complete disaster".
"Apart from distress, apart from people losing lives, 2 per cent is the loss of GDP. What else did demonetisation give us? Who will take responsibility of all this? The decision lies in the door step of the Prime Minister and because of his impulsive decision, the country lost 2 per cent GDP. It is a completely disaster," he said
He further said that demonetisation only created a panic situation and landed the poor and the middle-class in deep trouble and distress.
Continuing his attack, Owaisi said the "basis", on which the Government announced demonetisation to the people, has failed miserably.
"It is absolutely right because when demonetistion was announced to the country by the Prime Minister, he had said that it was implemenetd to stop black money, to stop counterfeit currency, corruption and to stop terrorism. And the government has failed on all these four counts," he added.
Meanwhile, Trinamool Congress leader Derek O'Brien has called demonetisation a big flop show and equated it to former prime minister Indira Gandhi's sterilisation programme.
He said that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) will lose the 2019 election because of their 'notebandi' (demonetisation) programme, just as Indira Gandhi had lost the 1977 election because of her 'nasbandi' (vasectomy) programme.
On Wednesday, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) highlighted that about 89 million notes of Rs. 1,000 currency did not come back to the system out of a total of 6,700 million notes that were in the system as on November 8.
RBI, in its report, said that the cost of printing notes doubled to Rs. 7,965 crore in FY17 from Rs. 3,421 crore in FY16 on account of new currency printing after the note ban.
The apex banking system in its annual report stated that only 1.3 per cent of Rs. 1000 notes didn't return after the Centre's demonetisation exercise.
However, RBI added that it pumped in 2,380 crore notes totalling Rs. 5.54 lakh crore in the two months post demonetisation between November 9 and Decemeber 31.
Earlier on November 8 last year, the Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government announced its demonetisation drive, wherein, currency denominations of Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000 notes were stopped as legal tender.