People support PM Narendra Modi’s demonetisation move: UP netas tell Amit Shah

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Amid reports of continuing inconvenience because of currency rationing and the fear that distress may overtake the initial popular endorsement of demonetisation, there is feedback which should reassure the BJP leadership.

Forty BJP MPs from the eastern region of poll-bound UP have told party president Amit Shah and home minister Rajnath Singh that people, notwithstanding the hardship, remain supportive of PM Narendra Modi‘s dramatic decision and are confident that the PM will pull it off.

The MPs who huddled with Singh and Shah at NDMC Centre on Wednesday for a free exchange of views on how demonetisation has gone so far in rural areas, said non-availability of currency was a matter of concern and the government needed to take swift ameliorative steps.

But they said the complaints about lack of currency had not trumped popular approval of demonetisation itself, with people confident that Modi would steer them to safety soon.

“The wind is blowing in favour of BJP as people are confident about the demonetisation move. Most people are confident that what the PM has promised will be delivered,” said a senior BJP member. He said the ongoing “political yatra” was testimony of the BJP’s popularity as people had gathered in huge numbers even in small rallies.

Some leaders raised issues like cash shortage in rural areas and involvement of bank employees in converting scrapped currency for commissions of 10-15% in rural banks. “One member cited an example of how a farmer got his scrapped currency converted for 15% extra through an agent of a nationalised bank employee,” a leader said.
The home minister is learnt to have said that measures were already taken to curb malpractices and cited several examples of bankers’ arrests. “MPs were told by the party president to educate people about demonetisation in view of the financial irregularities of the UPA government,” a leader said.

Another MP said the unanimous view was that the returns were far higher than the risks involved.

Shah held a meeting with Union ministers, including Piyush Goyal and Prakash Javadekar, on Thursday. Sources said senior ministers have been asked to share their views with party workers so that it can be disseminated among people.

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