Pension, Free Power, Startup Fund: What Congress HP Manifesto Promises

Shimla | Updated: 05 November, 2022 5:55 pm IST
Senior Congress leaders launched the party's manifesto for Himachal Pradesh polls in Shimla on Saturday.

With just eight days left for crucial Himachal Pradesh Assembly polls, the Congress on Saturday released its manifesto promising to bring back old pension scheme (OPS), give 300 units of free power to each household, 680 crore StartUp fund and one lakh jobs for youth, besides Rs 1500 per month for all women between 18 to 60 years.

Congress said it would take a decision regarding its chief ministerial candidate after the conclusion of elections, stating that the party is contesting the polls under a collective leadership.

“We are fighting elections under the Central leadership. We did it in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. We selected our CM in these states after discussing with MLAs,” said AICC in-charge for the state, Rajeev Shukla.

The manifesto was released in the presence of Chhattisgarh chief minister Bhupesh Baghel, former state party chief Sukhwinder Singh Sukhu and AICC secretaries Tejinder Pal Bittu and Manish Chatrath.

Speaking at the manifesto launch, Congress’ poll manifesto committee chairman Dhani Ram Shandil said the ruling BJP has failed to live up to the expectations of people and not fulfilled the promises made five years ago.

“This is not just a poll manifesto, but a document prepared for the development and welfare of the people of Himachal Pradesh,” Shandil said.

On the implementation of the old pension scheme, CM Baghel said: “Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh governments have written to the Central government to return the money to implement OPS, but they refused.”

“We will again write to the Central government and will take legal advice and take legal recourse to implement the OPS if needed,” the Chhattisgarh CM said.

He further said that the Centre needs to give Rs 17,000 crore to the state.

Meanwhile, Shukla said that the party has prepared its ‘pratigya patra’, the manifesto, after consulting all sections of society.

The Congress leader stated the party will set up an anti-drug enforcement agency headed by a retired judge to stop the menace of drugs in the state.

In its manifesto, Congress promised to revoke all transfers done by the Jairam Thakur government to harass officials, adding that the Congress will form an agriculture and growers committee, which will have representation from apple growers and the committee will decide the price of fruits and crops.

If elected, Congress will provide loans to taxi drivers at nominal rates and to increase the period of permit from 10 years to 15 years.

Shukla said that a committee will be formed for the growers, reducing fee for gun licences, pension scheme for journalists and reducing the debt of the state from the current Rs 70,000 crore.

Polling for the 68-member assembly is scheduled on November 12. Congress is campaigning aggressively in the state to dislodge the ruling BJP from power in the hill state. Results will be declared on December 8.

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