Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman along with BJP General Secretary Bhupendra Yadav and state party president Sanjay Jaiswal releases party manifesto ahead of the Bihar Assembly Elections, in Patna on Thursday.(PTI)
Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman along with BJP General Secretary Bhupendra Yadav and state party president Sanjay Jaiswal releases party manifesto ahead of the Bihar Assembly Elections, in Patna on Thursday.(PTI)

Bihar Assembly Election 2020: BJP promises 1.9 mn jobs, free Covid-19 vaccine in its manifesto

The party also vowed to make one crore women in Bihar self-dependent in the next five years by creating self-help groups (SHGs)
By Vijay Swaroop | Hindustan Times, Patna
UPDATED ON OCT 22, 2020 12:27 PM IST

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday countered the opposition Grand Alliance’s (GA) promise of providing 1 million government jobs in poll-bound Bihar by going many notches above and pledged to give 1.9 million jobs in different sectors.

The party made several promises in its 11-point Sankalp Patra, which was released by Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday.

The party also vowed to make 10 million women in Bihar self-dependent in the next five years by creating self-help groups (SHGs).

The Sankalp Patra claimed that the ruling National Democratic Alliance government (NDA) in Bihar, which comprised the BJP and its senior ally, the Janata Dal (United), provided jobs to 350,000 teachers. “Moving forward, in next one year, the NDA government will recruit 300,000 teachers in all schools, high schools and universities,” the manifesto stated.

Also read: A look at women candidates in Bihar assembly polls reveals a harsh reality

The party tried to lure youths by promising to make Bihar an information technology (IT) hub. “In India, the IT industry is worth $177 billion. Bihar is to be developed as a next generation IT hub and this will create five lakh new jobs in the next five years,” it said.

The BJP has promised to provide 100,000 jobs in the healthcare sector, including recruitment of 10,000 doctors and 50,000 paramedical staff.

It also pledged the construction of the second All India Medical Sciences (AIIMS) at Darbhanga by 2024.

The Sankalp Patra talked about creating 1 million jobs through interlinking of 1,000 new Farmers Produce Organisations (FPO) and developing a supply chain for produce such as maize, fruits, vegetables, makhana, medicinal plants, etc.

“If we sum up, we will be creating jobs for 1.9 million people in the next five years,” said Dr Sanjay Jaiswal, the president of BJP’s Bihar unit.

With regard to women empowerment, the BJP claimed that it has helped 12 million women become self-dependent through 1 million SHGs. “The target is to add one crore more women self-dependent,” it said. The sankalp patra dwelt on minimum support price (MSP) for cereals and a bid to upgrade educational institutions in the state.

The manifesto also promised to provide free coronavirus disease (Covid-19) vaccinations to all residents of Bihar after a vaccine is launched.

Tejashwi Yadav, the GA chief ministerial candidate, has promised 1 million jobs. This has put the NDA on the backfoot and the BJP manifesto is seen as a damage control exercise to win back the youths especially after their leaders were wondering as to where the money would come from to launch a massive recruitment scheme.

Sitharaman solicited votes for the NDA and also put out figures to show how Bihar has progressed in the last 15 years under its rule.

“In power sector, Bihar has reached 100% capacity utilisation, the agriculture growth rate has increased from 2.3% to 8.5% in the last 15 years and non-agriculture activity growth rate from 3.9% to 12%,” she said.

She said that since no industrial activity took place during the 15-year rule of Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad and his wife Rabri Devi, any comparison would be odious.

“The industrial growth rate has been 17% in the last 15 years,” she added.

She appealed to the voters to reelect Nitish Kumar as the CM for the fourth time.

“Bihar’s growth will be a big engine for the country’s growth,” she added.

The 243-member legislative assembly goes to polls on October 28, November 3 and 7.

The results will be declared on November 10.

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