SCOTTISH Tories attacking SNP plans for a renewed case for Scottish independence for once the coronavirus lockdown is over have been accused of “hypocrisy”.

Conservatives latched onto the news yesterday, insisting the party “should be focused on other things” during the crisis.

John Lamont, Tory MP for Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk, tweeted: “So the SNP are pushing for independence when they should be focussed on other things. This should not surprise anyone.”

Meanwhile, Scottish Tory leader Jackson Carlaw said it was “simply astonishing” the party would look into planning during the crisis.

However, Constitutional Relations Secretary Michael Russell has been quick to correct the party over their accusations.

The MSP reminded Lamont that formal independence work was suspended back in early March, when Nicola Sturgeon wrote to Yes supporters informing them that limiting the spread of the coronavirus is now priority and calling off all campaigning.

And he reminded the Tories what their own party leader has been up to at Westminster.

Russell wrote: “Tory UK Government has continued with Brexit negotiation despite pandemic, massive harm from financial effect on top of Covid and no ability to scrutinise by Westminster or devolved governments.”

The UK Government has been urged to stop Brexit negotiations as the pandemic takes precedence – but ministers have rejected this and intend for the current transition period to conclude on December 31 as planned.

READ MORE: SNP to consider UBI in bid to build a fairer independent Scotland

There are fears the pressure to make a Brexit deal while the pandemic is ongoing could raise the chances of a No-Deal Brexit – which would be sure to have worrying financial consequences on an economy already facing recession as a result of the lockdown.

Today it was revealed that the SNP’s Social Justice and Fairness Commission is looking into how universal basic income could be implemented in an independent Scotland.

The policy, which guarantees every citizen a state payment, could form a key part of the SNP’s new white paper for an independent Scotland which is being inspired by the groundbreaking Beveridge Report