New Delhi: Noted economist and Nobel Prize winner, Amartya Sen on Wednesday slammed Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the government’s move to demonetise higher currency notes.
In an interview to NDTV, the Bharat Ratna awardee termed the move as ‘despotic and authoritarian’.
He said that demonetisation is a ‘small fry in terms of achievement but a big disruptor to the Indian economy’.
Sen also rued the lack of intelligence on Modi’s part.
“We all want something to be done about black money. But surely, it also has to be intelligent and humane. That has not happened,” he said.
“If suddenly a government says we won’t pay you, that is despotic. I am not a fan of capitalism but…trust is key to capitalism; this goes against trust altogether. There is a potential danger of undermining the economy and the very basis of capitalism. Tomorrow the government could do the same with bank accounts and not allow anything above a certain amount unless people prove they are not racketeers,” he added.
A sharp critic of Narendra Modi, Sen said that he would be full of admiration for the Indian PM if he successfully managed to get rid of black money.
“I would never criticise Modi for wanting to get rid of black money. If he did it successfully, I would be full of admiration and applause. My worry is that with this move, the lives of law-abiding citizens and white money-holding people will be that much harder. My differences with Modi are over our view of India… and I would like to say the BJP does not have license based on 31 percent f the vote to declare some people anti national just because they happen to disagree with the government,” the Nobel laureate said.