NEW DELHI: The ruling BJP is counting on gains made in rural areas of Haryana and support from women to maintain its electoral superiority in the poll-bound state. It hopes that a rainbow scheme to reward Gram Panchayats for implementing Central and state welfare programmes will help CM Manohar Lal Khattar to gain strong footprints in rural Haryana.
“The Khattar government worked closely with Gram Panchayats in Haryana. Under the rainbow scheme, Gram Panchayats were rated on seven social parameters, which included sex ratio, education and dropout, hygiene and sanitation, environment preservation, peace and harmony, good governance and social participation,” said Sumeet Bhasin, director of the BJP think tank Public Policy Research Centre.
In its report, the PPRC noted that 6,000 Gram Panchayats were verified by the Haryana government out of which 63 per cent bagged ratings in the range of one to six. The government rewarded such panchayats with doles totalling Rs 84 crore in 2019.
“Unlike the past image of caste feud, Haryana in the recent years has shown social peace, which is indeed on account of Gram Panchayats consciously working to maintain and promote peace, which was one of the social parameters,” added Bhasin.
Incidentally, 465 Gram Panchayats were rated for sex ratio, suggesting marked improvements in numbers of girl child. Bhasin said the government was able to break the gender bias in Haryana by promoting women in panchayats and sports.
“The decision to open stadium in villages with 40 per cent scheduled caste population has also gone down well with the rural people. The state has taken lead in the Khelo India scheme of the Central government. The women are significantly socially empowered in contrast to the perception of the state being a highly patriarchal society,” said the PPRC director.
Saffron party gets Bhadana for Gujjar votes
The BJP on Friday inducted BSP leader and former Haryana minister Kartar Singh Bhadana. The Gujjar leader’s induction is likely to give a boost to the BJP on Monday, the voting day in Haryana. BJP national general secretary Arun Singh inducted Bhadana into the party in New Delhi.
Incidentally, Bhadana had contested against Congress’ Sachin Pilot from Dausa Lok Sabha constituency in Rajasthan in 2004 on a BJP ticket.
“It’s a homecoming for me. I am joining the BJP due to strong decisions, including revocation of Article 370, by the Narendra Modi government,” he said, after joining the saffron party.