Former Finance Minister P Chidambaram on Saturday launched another attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi while sharply reacting to the Friday’s stampede that killed at least 26 people.
In a series of tweets, Chidambaram wrote, “Railway Minister may take pledge on day after. Rs One lakh crore for rail safety, track upgrading, signalling & not for bullet train. Bullet train will be like demonetisation. It will kill everything else including safety.
“Railways should spend on safety, better infrastructure and better facilities. Not on bullet train. Bullet train is not for ordinary people. It is an ego trip for the high & mighty.”
Chidambaram was equally brutal with his criticism for the Modi government on the sinking economy of India following the demonetisation announcement and introduction of GST, not so long ago. His latest jibe against Modi came a day after BJP’s own ally, the Shiv Sena likened the Friday’s stampede to a ‘massacre.’
Shiv Sena MP, Sanjay Raut told PTI, “This incident is a public massacre for which the government and railways are responsible. We have time and again demanded that the old and dilapidated foot overbridges be redeveloped but no action has been taken yet.”
On Saturday, the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena’s chief, Raj Thackeray, had called Modi a ‘liar’ while terming the Railway Minister Piyush Goyal as ‘useless.’ Thackeray had threatened to not allow the bullet train in Mumbai unless safety infrastructures for train passengers improved in Mumbai.
“I shall not allow even a brick for the Bullet Train project to be laid. First resolve all the basic problems of Mumbai commuters. If Modi wants, let him construct it in Gujarat. If they use force, we shall also retaliate,” Thackeray was quoted by IANS.
A stampede on Friday at Elphinstone Road station had killed at least 26 people while injuring dozens of passengers.