‘Deriding people of Bihar’: Congress targets BJP over its free Covid-19 vaccine promise in manifesto
Congress leader Randeep Singh Surjewala on Thursday targeted the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) over the free coronavirus (Covid-19) vaccine promise mentioned in its manifesto for the upcoming Bihar assembly election. The Congress spokesperson said that the BJP is deriding the people of Bihar.
“In migrant workers crisis, Bihar CM & Deputy CM said they won’t let Biharis enter. PM said vaccine can’t possibly be made before a year. 1000 Biharis died due to Covid. Do central ministers care? They’re deriding people of Bihar,” Surjewala said at a press conference, as reported by news agency ANI.
With less than a week left for the first phase of the assembly elections in Bihar, political parties have released manifestos which are centred towards issues such as Covid-19 crisis, migrant exodus and women empowerment.
The Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday released its 11-point manifesto which included promises such as providing over 1.9 million jobs across sectors, creation of Bihar as an information technology (IT) hub and construction of a second AIIMS hospital in the state.
The party has also promised that after the approval of the Covid-19 vaccine from Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), every person in Bihar will get vaccinated free of cost.
Apart from Surjewala, Chhattisgarh chief minister Bhupesh Baghel also accused the BJP of politicising public health by promising free Covid-19 vaccine and further termed it as “Vaccine Electionism”.
“NDA manifesto says free vaccine for Biharis. This is a poll promise BJP and JDU have made. Note: A Manifesto is a list of promises to be delivered if the government comes to power then they are politicising health of citizens with #VaccineElectionism,” Baghel’s tweet read.
Amid the criticism, the BJP clarified that the announcement of free vaccine should not be looked as an election promise. The party’s national general secretary Bhupendra Yadav, who released the manifesto along with Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman and state unit chief Sanjay Jaiswal, said that health is an important aspect of public policy and should be addressed by all parties in a reasonable manner.
Elections for choosing the 243-member legislative assembly in Bihar will be held in three phases - October 28, November 3 and 7. Results will be declared on November 10.