BHOPAL: Eyeing return to power in Madhya Pradesh after 15 years, the opposition Congress on Saturday, released its manifesto for the November 28 polls, promising to waive off farmers' loans up to Rs 2 lakh within 10 days of being voted to power.
Titled the Vachan-Patra, (document of promises) the document was released by state Congress chief Kamal Nath in presence of other senior leaders, including state election campaign committee chief Jyotiraditya Scindia, Leader of Opposition Ajay Singh, ex-CM Digvijaya Singh, manifesto committee chief Rajendra Singh and former union minister Suresh Pachouri.
"This is detailed Vachan-Patra which will be fulfilled in letter and spirit and not the like BJP manifestos of previous years which have ended up becoming Jumla Patras (document of hollow slogans). Owing to 15 years misrule of successive BJP governments, every section of MP population is troubled," said Nath.The 112-page manifesto comprises 972 points, out of which 75 are focal points which pertain to the welfare of each and every segment of population, including farmers, youth, women and traders."Once our party is elected to power, a definite time-frame will be fixed for every ministry and department for executing the promises on ground," said Scindia.
The manifesto promises to waive off farmers loans of nationalized and cooperative banks up to the limit of Rs 2 lakh. The loan waiver will come into effect within ten days of the Congress being elected to power, said Nath. In line with Swaminathan Committee recommendations for ensuring profitable prices to farmers for their produce, the manifesto mentions about not allowing farmers produce to be sold in mandis below the MSP.
Also, bonus would be given on wheat, paddy, jawar, bajra, makka, soybean, mustard, cotton, tuar, moong, chana, masoor, urad, garlic, onion, tomato and sugarcane.The manifesto promises halving the electricity bills of farmers through 50 per cent concessions and also rendering Rs 5 per litre bonus on milk. A new crop plan has also been promised in the manifesto.A Krishak Kanya Vivah Sahayata Yojana to help small and marginal farmers in the marriage of their daughters has been promised. An incentive amount of Rs 51,000 would be paid for marriage of daughter of every farmer who holds agricultural plot up to 2.5 acres.
The Holy Cow
In what is being seen the part of Congress' brand of cow politics, the party has promised gaushalas (cowsheds) in every village panchayat, besides cow sanctuaries in identified areas. Government would render grant for running and maintaining the gaushalas. Emphasis has also been laid for professionalized production of gobar khad (cow manure), Kanda (cow dung cakes) and Gau Mutra (cow urine) in the cowsheds.
Temporary camps would be started on all main roads and highways for protection of stray cows and arrangements would also be made for the treatment of ill and injured cows as well as the burial of cow carcasses.
The manifesto resolves to make MP a corruption free state by enacting a new anti-corruption law, which will make indulging in corruption (both taking and giving bribe) a serious and non-bailable offence. Special anti-corruption courts would be constituted where charge-sheets will have to be filed within 30 days.
Government officials, including those holding important positions in state secretariat will not be allowed single posting of more than three years. Newly appointed public servants and nominated public representatives will have to submit affidavit of assets held by them and kin as well as the source of the income at the time of appointment/nomination, which would serve as the basis for ascertaining their income and confiscating assets disproportionate to their income in future.
A Jan Ayog (Public Commission) comprising experts, educationists, journalists, women and representatives from all other sections will probe all scams that happened during the BJP regime (2008-2018), including the multi-crore Vyapam scam.The government recruitment process would be made transparent and the scam tainted Vyapam (MP Professional Examination Board) would be shut down.Youth and Women All such new industries which render employment to unemployed educated youths will be rendered 25 per cent of salary or Rs 10,000 whichever is less as Salary Grant from the government over a period of 5 years.
A Youth Commission will be constituted and a New Ideal Youth Policy will be formulated.Girls would be given free education till PhD. Level, while smart-phones, smart cards and health cards will be given to women. Students scoring 70 per cent marks or more would be gifted laptops, while concessional loans would be rendered to college going girls for having their own two wheelers.
A new battalion of police, Rani Durgawati Battalion would be raised which will include only women in all ranks, special cells for probing crime against women will be constituted in every district and dedicated women police outposts would be established in areas housing girls schools and colleges, besides places where women are working in large numbers.
Also, it promises waiving off outstanding loans of women self help groups (SHGs) and rendering them loans at concessional rates.Other points· Social security pension to be hiked from Rs 300 to Rs 1000·Rajiv Gandhi Smartcard to every person· Right to House law to be enacted which will ensure Rs 2.5 lakh and 450 square foot residential plot to every homeless family.
Rationalization of taxes and fees and lowering Mandi Tax to 1per cent. Making petrol, diesel and cooking gas cheaper· 100 units of power for just Rs 1 per unit· Constitution of Transgender Board· Constitution of Upper Caste Commission· Constituting Senior Citizen Welfare Board· Journalists and Advocates Safety Act.
Daily wage employees in all departments, including safai staff to be regularized and framing rules for their promotion along with benefits of Seventh Pay Commission. 24x7 electricity supply for domestic and industrial consumers.