Top promises in Congress manifesto for Lok Sabha polls
Congress president Rahul Gandhi released the party’s manifesto for the seven-phased Lok Sabha elections on Tuesday. Gandhi said the manifesto was not made in closed rooms and it reflects the wishes of the people of the country.
The poll manifesto of the party is summed up here in 15 points:
Minimum Income Guarantee
The Congress has promised to implement Nyuntam Aay Yojana (NYAY) to eliminate poverty. To ensure a life of dignity to all Indians, Congress will introduce the Nyuntam Aay Yojana (NYAY) under which Rs. 72,000/year will be transferred to the poorest 20 per cent households in India. It will be transferred to the woman in the household, as far as possible.
To the youth of India, Congress pledges to make jobs our no.1 priority, both in the public and private sector. The party has promised 34 lakh jobs in the public sector if elected to power by filling all 4 lakh central government vacancies before March 2020, persuading the state governments to fill their 20 lakh vacancies and creating an estimated 10 lakh new Seva Mitra positions in every gram panchayat and urban local body.
Farmers And Farm Labour
The Congress has promised to put the farmers “on the path from “Karz Maafi” (loan waiver), to “Karz Mukti” (loan-free)”. The manifesto also promises to present a separate “Kisan Budget” every year. “We will also establish a permanent National Commission on Agricultural Development and Planning,” says the poll document of the Congress.
The Congress promised to enact the Right to Healthcare Act and guarantee every citizen free diagnostics, out-patient care, free medicines and hospitalisation, through a network of public hospitals and enlisted private hospitals. It said, “We will double expenditure on healthcare to 3 per cent of GDP by 2023-24.”
The Congress promised to “simplify the GST regime with a single moderate rate of tax, zero rating of exports, and exemption for essential goods and services.”
Armed Forces and Paramilitary Forces
The Congress has promised to increase defence spending and expedite all modernisation programmes of the Armed Forces in a transparent manner.
Quality Education For Every Child
The Congress has said it will make school education from Class I to Class XII in public schools compulsory and free if elected to power. “We will double the allocation for Education to 6 per cent of GDP by 2023-24,” the party said.
The Congress has promised to legislate the Women’s Reservation Bill providing for 33 per cent of seats for women in the Lok Sabha and the State Legislative Assemblies and a 33 per cent quota for women in all central government jobs.
The Congress has promised to “implement, in letter and spirit, the Forest Rights Act, 2006” saying, “No forest dweller will be unjustly evicted.” It has also promised minimum support prices for non-timber forest produce.
Right to Homestead
The party has promised to enact the Right to Homestead Act to provide a piece of land for every rural household that does not own a home or own land on which a house may be built.
End to Hate Crimes
The Congress alleged that under the BJP-led government, “hate crimes and atrocities against vulnerable sections of the people have increased manifold”. It said the police and district administration will be held accountable for proven negligence in the case of riots, mob violence and hate crimes.
The Congress has promised to enact a law on privacy and restrict the use of Aadhaar to the original purposes of the Aadhaar Act.
Protecting Our Institutions
Alleging that the institutions of the country “were brazenly undermined in the last 5 years”, the Congress said bodies such as RBI, ECI, CIC and CBI will be given authority and autonomy. It also promised to “abolish the opaque electoral bonds introduced by the NDA government and set up a National Election Fund” to ensure free and fair elections.
Cities and Urban Governance
The Congress has promised to introduce a new model of governance for towns and cities through directly elected mayors and introduce right to housing.
Environment and Climate Change
The Congress has said air pollution is a national public health emergency and promises to strengthen the National Clean Air Programme.
Rights of LGBTQIA+
Congress has promised to “immediately withdraw” the Transgender Bill, 2018 and instead draft a new bill in “consultation with the LGBTQIA+ community”.
A law to be enacted to curb monopolies and cross-ownership in media. Cases of suspected monopolies will be referred to the Competition Commission of India.
An amendment to the Anti-Defection Law to ensure immediate disqualification of MPs and MLAs who disobey the party whip or withdraw allegiance.
A law to be enacted to prohibit discrimination on the basis of language, caste, religion or gender in the supply of goods and services.
Reservation in promotion
An amendment to the Constitution to ensure reservation for SCs, STs and OBCs in promotion posts.
The Niti Aayog to be scrapped and Planning Commission will be reconstituted with re-defined responsibilities.