“Daylight Robbery”: Chidambaram Slams Centre Over National Monetisation Pipeline

Hitting out at Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Congress leader P Chidambaram on Friday called the new ‘National Monetisation Pipeline’ scheme as “scandalous” and “daylight robbery”.

“She’ll privatise it and get only Rs 1.5 lakh crore. Assume the current revenue is Rs 1.3 lakh crore, she’s only getting an additional Rs 20,000 crore. For the sake of Rs 20,000 crore, you’ll sell all that has been built over 70 years? This is scandalous. This is daylight robbery,” Chidambaram said during a presser in Mumbai.

“Assets are giving current revenue. Finance Minister says – I’ll get Rs 1.5 lakh crore. But she should also say what’s the current revenue. Suppose for the sake of argument, current revenue is Rs 1.6 lakh crore,” the former finance minister further said.

“All that has been built over the last 70 years is being pawned off into the hands of a select few. People must be aware of this danger and protest against it,” he added.

Sitharaman had launched the National Monetisation Pipeline last month that includes Centre’s four-year plan to monetize its brownfield infrastructure assets.

The government has planned a Rs 6 lakh crore pipeline of assets that can be monetised which includes a range of assets put on the block for private sector participation, over a four-year period, from Financial Year 2022 to Financial Year 2025.

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