PM Modi under illusion that in short time he can become as popular as Nehru and Indira: Congress

New Delhi: Taking a dig at Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the demonetization move, Congress leader Ahmed Patel said Narendra Modi appears to be having the illusion that within a short span of time he could become as popular as some of his predcessors.

“I feel that the present Prime Minister in two-and-a- half-year of his rule wants to be like Jawaharlal Nehru, Indira Gandhi, Lalbahadur Shastri, Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Rajiv Gandhi, which is not possible,” Patel, Political Secretary to Congress President Sonia Gandhi, told reporters here.

“To become (popular) like them many things have to be done, many sacrifices need to be made. You cannot just become like them,” Patel said.

“When the decision of notebandi (demonetization) was announced we had supported it, but we are against the way it was implemented as this government had announced the decision without any preparation. Not just that, I would say that the decision was taken without proper thinking,” Patel alleged.

“This led to unprecedented trouble for our people especially, to the women,” Patel said. “The way the old money has come into banks, one has an impression that there was no black money in the system,” he said.

He said the government had expected that big amount of black money will be unearthed by demonetization, after which they would be able to give largesse to people in the next budget but now they cannot do that.

In reply to a question on promotion of cashless system, Patel said, “That is not practical in the country, where many people do not have bank accounts and mobile phones. The US also is not a completely cashless economy. To go cashless requires much preparation and they (BJP government) is doing this without any preparations”. Patel is here to oversee preparations ahead of the visit of Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday.