Key Takeaways: BJP Manifesto woos farmers & small traders, talks about health & infrastructure

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BJP's ‘nationalist’ manifesto; are political parties using the populist approach?

BJP presented its manifesto in the midst of all their senior leadership today.
From the 2014 slogan of ‘ab ki baar modi Sarkar’ to 2019’s ‘ek baar phir modi sarkar’, BJP has presented its manifesto with the theme – Sankalpit Bharat, Sashakt Bharat.

Party President Amit Shah gave the opening speech and welcomed all the senior leaders of BJP.

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The manifesto was presented by Union Minister Rajnath Singh, who was also the head of the manifesto committee.

The manifesto speaks about 75 steps to transform India.
He started by saying that no scams surrounded the Modi government in their present tenure and going forward they are ready to meet the expectations and aspirations of the youth of the country and of the farmers and the poor. He highlighted that their main aim is to set an example of transparency as 6 crore people of India were involved in deciding the manifesto.

Process –
Rajnath Singh highlighted that since the time ‘Mann ki Baat’ was launched, the work has been going on to consult people, take their ideas and then to incorporate them in the manifesto of 2019. Committees, sub committees were made to ensure it turns out to be a practical manifesto.
He said that India aims to be in the top 3 economies of the world.

Some key highlights were –
Farmers:
Pension for small and marginal farmers after the age of 60.
Short term loan upto Rs. 1 lakh at 0% interest rate for 1-5 years.
25 lakh crores to be spent on farmers. Will double farmer income by 2022.

Women empowerment:
Ensuring equal rights.
Uniform civil code to be implemented.
33% reservation in Parliament.

National Security:
Zero tolerance policy towards Terrorism; stop infiltration
Strengthening armed forces
Modernisation of police forces.

Agriculture:
Ongoing irrigation projects to be completed
Land records also to be digitised.

Infrastructure Development:
‘Pakka makaan’ and LPG cylinder to be given to all
Power for all, power in all villages to be made a reality.
Toilets and safe drinking water in all houses.
National highways length to be doubled.
By 2022, all railway tracks to be converted to broad guage/electrification to be provided.

Health:
1.5 lakh wellness institutes to be set up.
75 new medical colleges and PG colleges to be established.
Special mission to eliminate TB by 2025.

Good governance:
Banking facilities to be provided within 5 kms radius.
Digitisation of all courts in India.

Others:
Citizens amendment bill – Rajnath Singh ensured that they will get it passed through both the houses of the parliament.
Ram Mandir – He said that all possibilities will be looked through and the construction will be implemented.
Enhanced seats for management institutes, engineering and law colleges.
Small shopkeepers also to get pension after 60 years of age.

According to the speech given by Arun Jaitley, the essence of the manifesto was:
To deplete the poverty to single digit and then eliminate it.
Provide world class infrastructure.
To ensure 100 lakh crores investment is made in infrastructure over 5 yrs.
Doubling the income of the farmers will ensure 8% growth rate which will retain our position in fastest growing economy.

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