Mumbai: Senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal today demanded a judicial probe into the "demonetisation scam", claiming that most of the black money had returned to the banks which suggested a "conspiracy".
Sibal claimed at a press conference here that of the Rs 15.15 lakh crore in old currency that was demonetised, Rs 14.97 lakh crore was back in the banking system.
"Is the alleged black money becoming legitimate? This cannot happen without conspiracy of the ruling BJP and banking institutions," Sibal alleged.
"If the money which is deposited in the banks is not black money, what is the fight to curb black money, which (Prime Minister) Modi talks about to justify demonetisation, for? We demand a probe by a judicial commission in the demonetisation scam," he said.
Narendra Modi had asked the people the bear the pain for 50 days after demonetisation and said he was ready to face any punishment after that, Sibal pointed out, adding now the PM should announce what punishment he would take and where, as the situation was not yet normal.
"RBI Governor Urjit Patel and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley are unaware how much money has come back in the banking system," the Congress spokesperson said, alleging that demonetisation was a "conspiracy to benefit BJP".
Sibal also slammed the NDA government for advancing the Budget with an eye on Assembly elections. "Why was the need for preponing the Budget when the allocations will be implemented from April 1," he asked.
As per a Right to Information reply to a question by Congress, only eight government nominees on the central board of RBI attended the meeting on November 8 (prior to demonetisation), he claimed.
"Why was the 21-member board with independent directors not called? Was demonetisation a government or RBI decision?" he said.
Why BJP took no action against its own office-bearers in West Bengal and Tamil Nadu who were allegedly caught with "bundles of new Rs 2,000 notes", Sibal asked.
Congress would seek reply from PM in the budget session, he said. "He (Modi) did not speak in the Monsoon session. We want him to reply to our charges in the Parliament and not outside," Sibal said.