Focus on cow protection, provision of subsidised meals.
New Delhi: The BJP, on Sunday, promised a host of populist measures for the upcoming civic elections, including subsidised meals at Rs 10 per thali, no additional taxes for the next five years, and assured concrete roads within the municipal limits.
While promising a third party audit of all the major municipal projects, the saffron party emphasised that all other projects would be completed on time. The party’s manifesto also mentioned several projects and measures which had already figured in its manifesto in the previous polls.
Most of the promises made in the 2012 polls have prominently featured in the new version of the party manifesto or “Sankalp Patra (charter of commitment)” five years later. The party claimed that the core of the “Sankalp Patra” is to make Delhi the best “smart city” in the country. It has identified 41 major points on which it has offered its resolve to work in the next five years. Significantly, the first point — good governance with transparency — also featured at the top of the 2012 manifesto under transparent and accountable governance. Similarly, the expansion of civic services was also promised five years ago.
On the key responsibility of primary education, BJP’s 2017 “Sankalp Patra” looks a work of copy-paste of the previous manifesto. The BJP has promised betterment of primary education standards to bring them at par with noted private schools, a promise that was also made in 2012.
Even the much talked and current topic of “cow protection” is an example of copy-paste work. In its 2012 manifesto, the BJP had promised that the Delhi corporations will help the charitable societies running the “gaushalas” in the city to ensure provision of good fodder, veterinary services, and development of cow based products. The same has been copied in the “Sakalp Patra”.
Several other points like promises to make the city dhalao free, better collection and disposal of municipal solid waste, reclamation of sanitary landfill sites, single window for providing trade and factory licenses are mentioned in BJP’s poll documents of both 2012 and 2017.
A party insider said that due to lack of coordination between the members of the manifesto committee and a delayed start in finalising the document may have been one of the reasons for the glaring similarities between the 2012 manifesto and the 2017 Sankalp Patra.
Releasing the party’s poll document, Delhi BJP chief Manoj Tiwari said that the name Sankalp Patra is in line with the visions of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah. The party believes in a holistic approach of commitment to work for the electorate and is not just offering a manifesto of promises.
BJP also promised to give special attention to grievance redressal of people from the Northeast living in the city by forming a special cell. The party said that the upper limit of the conversion charge will be fixed at 10 years.
BJP also promised to launch social welfare schemes including the Deen Dayal Upadhyay Antyodya Rasoi Yojna to offer meals priced at Rs 10 per thali to citizens, increase the number of open gyms, run yoga classes and skill development centres, exempt start-up entrepreneurs from factory license requirement, increase the number of mobile dispensaries, betterment of dhobi ghats, and health and entertainment centres for the senior citizens.
“No new tax or hike in any taxes is to be made in the next five years under the BJP rule in the three civic bodies,” added Mr Tiwari.
BJP also promised to give special attention to grievance redressal of people from the Northeast living in the city by forming a special cell. The party said that the upper limit of the conversion charge will be fixed at 10 years. The exemption from getting building plans approved for plots measuring up to 105 square metres will now be extended to plots measuring up to 500 square metres.