Congress slams govt as Rupee hits record low of 80.79

New Delhi: The Congress on Thursday attacked the government over the Rupee plunging to an all-time low of 80.79 against the US dollar and said the middle and low income groups were bearing the brunt of the fall in the currency’s value.

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The rupee plunged by 83 paise — its biggest single-day loss in nearly seven months — to close at an all-time low of 80.79 against the US dollar on Thursday after the US Federal Reserve’s interest rate hike and its hawkish stance weighed on investor sentiments.

Slamming the Centre over the fall in the value of Rupee, Congress spokesperson Gourav Vallabh said it had added “fuel to fire” by issuance of a Reserve Bank of India notification dated August 22.

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“As per this notification, Reserve Bank of India had allowed full capital account convertibility, in other words local currency can be exchanged in the foreign currency up to the limit of one billion dollars,” he said.

So, any company which is in profit for the last three years can convert local currency into US dollars up to a limit of one billion dollars, and this notification was issued when the rupee was breaking records every day and tanking, he said.

“Earlier, we used to think that after entering the Margdarshak Mandal, the rupee will stop there, but this rupee is entering into super Margdarshak Mandal now, because it has crossed the Rs 80 mark and it is only 14 paisa less than Rs 81,” he said.

Instead of controlling this free fall of the rupee, the Narendra Modi-led government allowed the Indian companies with the profit of last three years to convert Indian currency into US dollars to the extent of one billion dollars — Rs. 8,081 crores, Vallabh alleged.

“Why Modi Ji? On whose instruction, on whose guidance you had issued this? Any person, who has any interest in economy and finance can question this notification,” he said.

When the rupee falls, all imports become expensive, including crude oil. Whether it is drugs or essential items in the medical industry, the middle and lower income groups will have to bear the brunt of the falling rupee, he said.

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