Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut on Sunday said that the people of India may seek resignation of Prime Minister Narendra Modi if issues such as employment and livelihood are not resolved, adding that people’s can’t survive long on “hopes and assurances”. Criticising the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led central government over the handling of the economic scenario in the wake of Covid-19 outbreak, Raut, in his weekly column in the party mouthpiece Saamana, said that 10 crore people have lost their livelihood and the pandemic has affected 40 crore families.

“How long will people spend their days on mere hopes and assurances? In the last 15 years, not a single problem of people has been removed. Prime Minister of Israel [Benjamin] Netanyahu is a friend of Prime Minister Modi. Due to the economic crisis and corona related atrocities, the Israeli people have started demonstrating on the streets everywhere. The people of Israel are demanding the resignation of Prime Minister Netanyahu. The same time can also come in India,” he said in his column Rokhthok.

Raut added that the corona crisis has led to 10 crore people getting unemployed and economic leadership is more important than leadership in the battlefield. “Millions are sitting unemployed today. Innumerable claims of inflation, poverty and unemployment have erupted in society. Economic leadership is more important than leadership in the battlefield,” Shiv Sena said. “Nobody is talking about the crisis, employment. It is easy to say crisis gives rise to opportunity. But, nobody knows how people are dealing with the crisis,” the Shiv Sena leader added.

Taking a dig at the BJP, he listed the government’s measures to tackle the economic situation which he said include procuring Rafael fighter jets, reciting Hanuman Chalisa daily (BJP MP’s comment), destabilising Rajasthan government, and coming back to power in Maharashtra on its own.

“The stoves of 40 crore families have been extinguished. What is the solution to their problems? Bhoomi pujan of Ram temple will be done, BJP needs Rajasthan, it will happen. Rafale aircraft from France also came to Ambala. But how are those who lost jobs in this period coping with the situation? Will the rulers ever tell them?” the Saamana executive editor asked in a sarcastically toned column.

The Sena leader said that the “threat” of coronavirus on India is “grave”, and the “measures” taken by the government to “defeat” it includes bringing fighter jets. He wrote that before Rafale, Indian governments have procured other fighter jets like Sukhoi and MiG, but such a “celebration” was never done. “Will Rafale jets with the bomb and missile-carrying capacity be able to destroy the crisis of unemployment and economic challenges?” Raut asked.

The Shiv Sena leader added that the economic situation of the country is very bad and said that people will again be ready to become “slaves”. “People will be ready to become slaves. Earlier, the British enslaved Indians and took them to ports such as Fiji, Mauritius Guyana, Suriname, etc. People will be ready to go as slaves now too. If the rules do not acknowledge this, then they can continue to celebrate over Rafael,” he said.

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