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Congress’s unkept promises

india Updated: Mar 25, 2009 00:37 IST
Aurangzeb Naqshbandi

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Tuesday said 80 per cent of promises made in the UPA’s common minimum programme had been fulfilled.

“The UPA government worked tirelessly in giving substance and meaning to the promises made in the CMP. But, it will be wrong to say that all promises have been fulfilled. Only 80 per cent could be implemented,” he said at the release of the Congress manifesto for the Lok Sabha elections.

What about the remaining 20 per cent? Hindustan Times takes stock of the government’s unfinished agenda.

Lok pal bill
The Law ministry is looking into various aspects of the Bill aimed to check corruption in high places in the government, but there is no headway.

Women’s quota
The Bill seeks to provide 33 per cent quota to women in the Lok Sabha and assemblies. A parliamentary standing committee, which got extension till the constitution of the 15th Lok Sabha, is examining it.

Communal violence bill
The UPA had pledged to enact a comprehensive law to deal with communal violence. But, it did not seek Parliamentary nod due to some reservations from the Opposition, mainly the Left. Now, the Congress proposes to bring in a law that empowers the NHRC to monitor investigation and trial in all cases of communal and caste violence.

Farmers’ rehab bill
UPA failed to get the Bill, seeking to give farmers market rates for the land acquired from them for industrial projects, passed in Parliament for which the Congress blamed the BJP.

The others
* Increasing public spending in education to 6 per cent of GDP and health to 2-3 per cent,
* Carving out Telangana from Andhra Pradesh
* Bill on sexual harassment at work places
* Reservation act to codify quotas and jobs for SCs and STs in the private sector

However, Congress spokesperson Manish Tewari described the government’s performance as extraordinary. “No other government has been able to achieve such an excellent strike rate. The Prime Minister has been candid enough to admit that only 80 per cent promises were fulfilled. This shows his honesty and probity in public life.”