One of the key election promises made by the BJP and its supporters during the 2014 Lok Sabha elections was to strengthen the value of the Indian rupee against the US dollar.
Many of the saffron party supporters including author Chetan Bhagat, spiritual guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar had predicted the value of Indian rupee to significantly rise after Narendra Modi became India’s prime minister. However, just like every other election promise of the BJP, this too has become a reason for the ruling party’s embarrassment.
The Indian rupee, which has been on continuous slide since the BJP came to power in 2014, touched an all-time low on Tuesday to over 70 against the US dollar before recovering by a fraction at Rs 69.98.
A report by IANS said that around 11 a.m., the rupee had plunged to 70.08 — lowest-ever — against the greenback. It was only after the Reserve Bank of India intervened, the the free fall of the Indian rupee could be curbed.
The intervention aided the rupee to stabilise just a tad below 70 to a USD at 69.98 around 11.05 a.m.
As expected, the news became a topic of intense social media conversation as journalists and commentators began to target the ruling party by reminding its leaders about their statements made during the UPA government.
Shiv Sena’s Aaditya Thackeray tweeted, “From what I remember last, the promise was to bring the Rupee equal to the Dollar, like it was when we won our freedom, $1=₹1. Irrespective of the global and local situations. At least that was the campaign. Perhaps we must realise that we are going the other way?”
Sharing the screenshot of Ravi Shankar’s tweet, journalist Vinode K Jose wrote, “It is refreshing to know that Indian rupee got stronger at Rs.70/ – per dollar four years after Modi came to power. A bhakt (guru) tweet sometime back.” Ravi Shnkar in his tweet had said, “It is frefreshing to know that the rupee will get stronger at Rs 40 per dollar if Modi comes to power.”
Journalist Ankur Bhardwaj tweeted, “Rupee has now joined the marg darshak mandal. Hits 70 to the US dollar.”
Author Chetan Bhagat too faced considerable social media heat as some journalists embarrassed him by reminding about his old tweets on the topic. In one of his tweets posted in 2013, Bhagat had slammed the UPA government with his tweet that read, “Rupee at 60. It is mayhem. Close to an economic crisis. But well, the government is silent.”
Rupee at 60. It is mayhem. Close to an economic crisis. But well, the government is silent.
— Chetan Bhagat (@chetan_bhagat) June 20, 2013
Journalist Swati Chaturvedi tweeted, “Has Chota Chetan made some pronouncement on the ₹ falling to the lowest historically? Or Bhakti is preventing him from tweeting?”
The bad news of Tuesday is likely to turn worse as financial experts predicted further meltdown in the value of Indian rupee. Anindya Banerjee, Deputy Vice President for Currency and Interest Rates with Kotak Securities, told IANS that rupee could be as low as to 71 against one US dollar in the immediate future.