– Salil Gewali, Shillong
A gunshot that kills a frightening tiger in the forest can also kill a harmless dear or duck if the shooter is unskilled. Exactly the same thing is happening now. Just imagine the catastrophe faced by our poverty-stricken folks vise-a-vise the rich after sudden demonetization. While the rich are finding too tough to reconcile themselves with the bombshell announced by PM Modi the poor have not been less persecuted. No doubt our Prime Minister, embodiment of sacrifice and patriotism, has seen the pain of the poor firsthand but this time he has quite failed to feel the agonies of the of the downtrodden. There are various kind of hardships being experienced by our villagers. Many from the remote areas are having tough time to acquaint themselves with the nitty-gritty of the bank. They never had imagined that their hard-earned money will one day be less useful than a foolscap paper. It’s often reported that illiterate farmers have to walk hours to reach a place where banks locate and most of them have just returned home in the evening empty handed. Some unlucky ones have witnessed the wrath of fussy bankers who patter out hard terms and conditions before handing over a single Rs 2000/- or 2500/-.
Unlike European countries India is underdeveloped country where the major populace does not know the basic utilities of bank. They feel that money kept at home is far safer than the bank.
Again, how useful are Rs 2,000 banknote when smaller notes like Rs 100 and Rs 500 are not available? Show me a foolish shop owner now who will return 13 nos of Rs 100/- by accepting a Rs 2000 note for groceries amounting Rs 700/-? No one is willing to accept this big note.
Well, we don’t disagree that the government’s demonetarization plan is praiseworthy but the preparation to meet the anticipated challenges is dismally poor. Phew, the scissors of demonetization have cut the wallets of the rich but they also have pierced deeply into the heart of the poor. Now we badly wish that demonetization does not become a bitter pill of antagonization.
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