In a sensational and direct conversation at the Economic Times event in Mumbai, Industrialist and Bajaj Group chairperson Rahul Bajaj said there is an atmosphere of fear, people are afraid to criticize the government (Modi Government) and don’t have the confidence that the government will appreciate any criticism.
People are afraid to criticize the government
Bajaj in the event asked an esteemed panel comprising Home Minister Amit Shah, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and Railway Minister Piyush Goyal very candidly. His question was, why people are not allowed to question the government.
Bajaj compared the current NDA government with the previous UPA government which ruled from 2004 to 2014 and said we had the freedom to critique the UPA government but that the current regime has created an environment of fear and uncertainty, as per the report.
The Congress party was quick to applaud Mr. Bajaj’s comment
[su_quote]During UPA-II, we could abuse anyone. You are doing good work, but if we want to openly criticize you, there is no confidence you will appreciate that. I may be wrong but everyone feels that” Bajaj said, according to a report in The Print[/su_quote]
Bajaj’s comments come the day after India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for the July-September quarter came in at 4.5 percent, the slowest growth in at least six-and-half years, according to data from the National Statistics Office.
Amit Shah reply to Rahul Bajaj
Soon followed was a reply from Home Minister Amit Shah
[su_quote] No need to fear anything,” Amit Shah responded. “The Narendra Modi-government has been criticized continuously in media. But, if you are saying that there is such an environment, we need to work to improve this.” Shah added that the government is working in a most transparent manner and that the government tries to improve depending on whether the criticism has any merit. [/su_quote]
Mr. Rahul Bajaj had also brought up Bhopal MP Praghya Singh Thakur, who created a controversy on Wednesday with her remarks in the Lower House of Parliament during DMK member A Raja’s narration of a statement by Nathuram Godse before a court on why he killed Mahatma Gandhi.
[su_quote] Is there a doubt who shot Gandhi?… I don’t know,” Bajaj said [/su_quote]
Amit Shah’s reply on Pragya Thakur
Shah responded that the government and Bharatiya Janata Party strongly condemn her remarks. Shah added that Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has already condemned her remarks and the party has taken action against her.
The BJP barred Thakur from attending its parliamentary party meeting in the ongoing session and removed her from the consultative committee on defense. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had earlier said that he would never forgive Thakur for insulting Mahatma Gandhi by calling his assassin Nathuram Godse a true patriot.
The home minister also asked people from the industry to visit the Valley with family and assess the real situation.
[su_quote] As home minister of the country, I am urging you to please visit Kashmir. The situation is normal there, you will see,” he added. As far as the timeline for removing the restriction on internet, the minister said that as this is a law and order issue, the local administration would take a decision in this regard. Further, he said that today only 630 people are in jail and out of that, less than 112 are political prisoners. [/su_quote]
On Friday, former prime minister Manmohan Singh on Friday termed the state of the economy as deeply worrying, while asserting that the state of society being even more “worrisome” is the fundamental reason behind the precarious condition of the economy.
[su_quote] The state of our economy is deeply worrying but today, I will argue how the state of our society is even more worrisome and that is a fundamental reason for the precarious state of our economy,” said while speaking at an event in Delhi. [/su_quote]
The former prime minister termed the GDP figures released as “unacceptable”.