Bengaluru: Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah has sent notice for defamation to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP president Amit Shah and party leader BS Yeddyurappa for accusing him of corruption and has demanded a public apology. Siddaramaiah has accused the top BJP leaders of making “baseless, false and untrue remarks” about him in campaign for the assembly election this Saturday. Reports suggest that he has sued the leaders for Rs 100 crore.
“... you are called upon to cease and desist from making such statements forthwith and give an unconditional public apology immediately through electronic, print and social media etc. in which the statements and advertisements have appeared,” says the notice.
The battle for Karnataka assembly polls is now warming up as allegations and counter allegations were seen to be made in the polls campaign on Monday. Former prime minister Manmohan Singh today launched a scathing attack on the Modi government for its “disastrous policies” and “economic mismanagement”, and said the country was facing crises that were avoidable. Singh attacked the government over a series of banking sector frauds, saying the money swindled almost quadrupled from Rs 28,416 crore in September 2013 to Rs 1.11 lakh crore in September 2017. “Perpetrators of these frauds meanwhile escape with impunity. The economic mismanagement of the Modi government, and I say this with great care and responsibility, is slowly eroding the trust of the general public in the banking sector,” he said.
“Our nation today is experiencing difficult times. Our farmers are facing an acute crisis, our aspirational youth are not finding opportunities, and the economy is growing below its potential,” Singh told reporters here.
PM Modi’s counter attack
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday rejected the Congress accusation against his government of not creating enough jobs and claimed that several of its initiatives led to the creation of jobs in the public and private sectors. Modi, in turn, held the Congress responsible for the unemployment situation and accused it of opposing technologies/initiatives like the EVMs and Aadhaar.
“With emphasis on public and private sectors, we are also focussing on personal sector for employment. The pace of work on the infrastructure projects has been increased,” Modi said in response to a query while addressing Bharatiya Janata Party Yuva Morcha ‘karyakartas’ through his NaMo app. Highlighting how the National Democratic Alliance government was strengthening the personal sector, he said that the country’s infrastructure sector was growing rapidly and added that without employing more people it was not possible to achieve this growth.
He mentioned a World Bank report on easing business environment in India and how through the Mudra Yojana a platform was being provided to budding entrepreneurs across the country.
Modi said that due to the government initiative, India had emerged as the best destination for foreign investment and this has been approved by various credit agencies. “The Foreign Direct Investment in India has reached its highest level, which is consistently increasing,” he said.
The Prime Minister said that under the Mudra Yojana, loans of Rs 1.27 crore have been disbursed to the youth of Karnataka without any collateral. “This constitutes 11 per cent of the total Mudra loans disbursed so far. Youngsters are not only becoming self-dependent, but also creating jobs for others,” he said.
Modi said that in the last few years, immense growth was seen in the Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) accounts.