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Puducherry BJP manifesto promises 'special Union territory' status, creation of 2.5 lakh jobs

The manifesto prepared after getting suggestions from 50,000 people was released by Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday

Published: 26th March 2021 02:06 PM  |   Last Updated: 26th March 2021 06:26 PM   |  A+A-

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman releasing the BJP manifesto for Puducherry on Thursday (Photo | G Pattabi Raman, EPS)

Express News Service

PUDUCHERRY: The BJP's election manifesto for Puducherry promises 'special Union territory' status to increase devolution of funds from 25 percent to 40 percent as done in Jammu and Kashmir to ensure development. The manifesto prepared after getting suggestions from 50,000 people was released by Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday.

It also promises to revise cost sharing of projects under centrally sponsored schemes in the ratio of 70 percent by the central government and 30 percent by the UT government in place of the current 30:70 formula.

Employment

Special focus has been given to employment in the manifesto with the party promising to create 2.5 lakh new job opportunities through the BEST Puducherry initiatives (making Puducherry a Business hub, Education hub, Spiritual hub and Tourism hub) and fill up all existing vacancies in state government departments annually. It also promises to grant age relaxation to youths who lost opportunities to take recruitment tests in the last five years.

A Puducherry Public Service Commission would be established for government jobs, which is a long pending demand of the UT.

Education

On the education front, the BJP promised 50 percent seats in government medical and engineering colleges for meritorious students of CENTAC, which the previous Congress government led by V Narayanasamy strived for but was kept waiting for approval of the Centre to introduce the legislation. The fee structure of schools will be rationalized through an independent regulatory body, by taking a leaf out of the AAP government in Delhi. First generation graduates will be provided free higher education.

Puducherry University will be split into Pondicherry Technology University, Pondicherry Arts and Science University and Pondicherry Medical University to achieve optimum educational outcomes.

Health

The initiative taken by the previous Narayanasamy government will be fulfilled with the BJP committing itself to provide 100 percent coverage to every Puducherry citizen under Ayushman Bharat Insurance scheme. Besides an additional assurance of Rs 5000 on critical care services for costs incurred beyond Ayushman Bharat Scheme will be provided. Free full body check-ups will be provided for all those above 50 years of age and a state of art cancer hospital will be established.

Women's welfare

With women constituting 51 percent of the population, special focus has been given to women as part of the party’s policy to give them opportunities, said Nirmala Sitharaman.

Women employees would be provided 50 percent reservation in all government and public sector institutions and there would be a mandatory 33 percent women police force in Puducherry. Free transport and free education of all female students from KG to PG would be provided.

The BJP has promised to waive all loans of Women Self Help groups which got impacted due to COVID-19.

Monthly ration kit

All ration card holders will get a monthly ration kit which includes 10 kg of rice, 2 kg of sugar and one litre of cooking oil, either through fair price shops or the equivalent cash transferred through DBT.

Farmers will get a top-up assistance of Rs 2000 under PM-Kissan scheme, while fishermen will also get top-up subsidy of Rs 11 lakh for purchase of trawlers and a financial assistance of Rs 6000 per year to all fishermen.

Tourism

A new tourism policy will be evolved. A helicopter service and sea plane service will be provided to link Puducherry and Karaikal with Chennai. The Puducherry Airport will be expanded and upgraded.

Infrastructure for business

A mega textile park, port and state-of-the-art IT park will be established.

A new integrated government office complex will be established for smooth conduct of governance.

Local body elections

The party promised to conduct local body elections due for over 10 years at the earliest and 50 percent seats will be reserved for women.

Nirmala Sitharaman said that a BJP government at the Centre and the Union territory will ensure implementation of all central schemes, which the previous government failed to do under the apprehension that Prime Minister Modi will get the credit. Listing out a host of schemes for housing, fishermen and farmers, Sitharaman said implementation of these schemes will ensure the development of these sections.



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