New Delhi: On the second anniversary of demonetisation – a move by Prime Minister Narendra Modi that withdrew notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 as legal tender – former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said, “The havoc that it (demonetisation) unleashed on the Indian economy and society is now evident to everyone. Notebandi impacted every single person, regardless of age, gender, religion, occupation or creed”.

Here’s what Singh said in a press statement:

•    It is often said that time is a great healer. But unfortunately, in the case of demonetisation, the scars and wounds of demonetisation are only getting more visible with time.

•    Small and medium businesses that are the cornerstone of India’s economy are yet to recover from the demonetisation shock. 

•    The financial markets are volatile as the liquidity crisis wrought by demonetisation is taking its eventual toll on infrastructure lenders and non-bank financial services firms.

•    Demonetisation has had a direct impact on employment as the economy continues to struggle to create enough new jobs for our youth.

•    We are yet to understand and experience the full impact of the demonetisation exercise. With a depreciating currency and rising global oil prices, macroeconomic headwinds are also starting to blow now.

Singh said that it was prudent to not resort to further unorthodox, short-term economic measures that can cause any more uncertainty in the economy and financial markets. He urged the government to restore certainty and visibility in economic policies.

“Today is a day to remember how economic misadventures can roil the nation for a long time and understand that economic policymaking should be handled with thought and care,” he said.