"Maximum Privatisation": Rahul Gandhi On Centre's Job Freeze To Cut Costs

Sharing a news article which states that the Centre would not create or fill government job posts as a way to cut costs, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said PM Modi's government wanted to use Covid as an excuse to push for privatisation.

'Maximum Privatisation': Rahul Gandhi On Centre's Job Freeze To Cut Costs

Rahul Gandhi has been critical of the central government's handling of the economy and Covid pandemic.

New Delhi:

A day after sharing a list of "Modi-made disasters", including the highest unemployment rate in 45 years, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi continued his attack on the BJP-led central government today, raking up the issue of reported freeze on recruitment to government posts. The Union Finance Ministry has dismissed the claim in a tweet.

"The Modi government's thinking is minimum government, maximum privatisation. Covid is just an excuse, the government's plan is to free government offices of all permanent staff, steal the youth's future and propel his own friends forward," Mr Gandhi said in a Hindi tweet.

For reference he tagged a newspaper article on the list of austerity measures adopted by the central government, including a freeze on creation of new posts and hiring against posts created after July 1 across ministries and departments. The article states that if it is absolutely essential to fill any vacant post, a proposal must be sent for approval to the Department of Expenditure.

Mr Gandhi has often led the Opposition in criticising the policies adopted by PM Modi's government. He has sharpened his attacks on the central government, especially its handling of the Indian economy, since the coronavirus pandemic necessitated a countrywide lockdown in March this year. But, the ruling BJP has dismissed his allegations in the past.

Most recently on August 30, a day before the release of the official economic data which showed that the country's GDP shrunk by 23.9 per cent in the April-June period - highest for independent India - Mr Gandhi announced the start of a video explainer series on "how the Modi government has destroyed the Indian economy".

In the videos and message tweeted since then, he has said the 2016 demonetisation move acted as a catalyst for the record GDP drop. He has maintained that the economy was further hurt by implementation of a "flawed GST" law, and the final nail in the coffin was the coronavirus pandemic, which brought key industries to a halt and rendered millions of people jobless.

To improve the state of India's economy, the former Congress chief has also frequently advised the government to consider immediate social welfare measures to help the poorer sections of the society - those worst affected by the lack of economic activity during the lockdown and with little, if any, liquidity.

He has also urged the government to consider, among other measures, direct cash injections to the poor, arguing that increased spending is the more effective way to jump-start the stuttering economy.