BJP manifesto in UP promises sops to all sections, Ram mandir on agenda

BJP manifesto in UP promises sops to all sections, Ram mandir on agenda
Locked in a tight fight, BJP today promised sops for students, women and farmers in its manifesto for Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls including waiver of farm loans and providing 24x7 electricity besides making efforts to get Ram temple built in Ayodhya within the law.

Besides the Ram temple, the BJP also brought up issues like triple talaq and exodus of people on communal lines in its 24-page manifesto released by BJP President Amit Shah, even as it promised to close down all illegal slaughter houses in the state on coming to power.

Shah told reporters that the party will make efforts to ensure construction of the Ram temple in Ayodhya "under constitutional provisions", as the party sought to woo all sections in a bid to form the government in UP after 15 years.

BJP, Shah said, under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, would turn UP into a developed state, the way it has developed the other states it rules.

"All BIMARU - Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh - states have become developed except UP," he said.

On the contentious issue of triple talaq, Shah said if the BJP comes to power it will take the views of Muslim women and will present their opinion before the Supreme Court.

The manifesto, called 'Lok Kalyan Sankalp Patra' (Pledge for People's Welfare) said the opinion of all women on triple talaq will be taken and placed in front of Supreme Court.

"The party is firm on the Ram temple issue...efforts will be made to ensure that Ram temple is constructed under the constitutional provisions," Shah said.

On Ram Temple, the manifesto said "law will be followed to get the temple built as soon as possible."

On exodus of people due to communal tension, he said a special team would be formed to check it at district level. DMs will be held responsible for mass exodus, he said.

Shah also said all mechanised slaughter houses will be closed in the state.

While announcing farm loan waiver for small and medium scale farmers, the manifesto promised to provide loan at zero per cent interest rate.

Aiming to take SCs and OBCs in its fold, the party announced a scholarship scheme after dalit icon Dr BR Ambedkar and OBC leader Ahilya Bai Holkar.

Shah said the BJP government would ensure free education to all girls in the state till graduation level under Ahilya Bai Education Scheme.

Similarly in a different scheme free education for boys till class 12th was also announced by him. The party will create a Dr B R Ambedkar scholarship fund of Rs 500 crore for poor students, he added.

Without mentioning about cow slaughter, the party President said if his party forms government it will shut all illegal slaughter houses in the state. Stressing that if voted to power, his party will take one step ahead of the ruling Samajwadi Party's laptop distribution scheme by providing 1 GB free data for one year besides free wi-fi in universities.

Taking a cue from SP, Shah promised to upgrade the Dial 100 of the state police to ensure police help in 15 minutes all over the state.

To ensure the safety of college girls, innovative anti- Romeo squads will be set up near colleges to check eve- teasing. Besides, three women battalions will be raised for security of women, the document said.
Class 3 and Class 4 employees will be hired only on the basis of merit, no interviews to end corruption, the manifesto said.

Shah also attacked SP and Mayawati's Bahujan Samaj Party which have ruled Uttar Pradesh for the last 15 years, accusing them of doing nothing to develop the backward state. Elections in UP will be held in seven phases from February 11 to March 8.

Accusing the Akhilesh Yadav government of not doing anything for the upliftment of the state, Shah said the Centre sanctioned Rs one lakh crore to Uttar Pradesh but no development has been seen on ground.
Besides, law and order is at its nadir, he claimed, adding that Akhilesh will have to answer for the problems faced by the state where "ruling party goondas have grabbed land".

He said people will not be hoodwinked by merely entering into an alliance with Congress to win the polls. "UP has been plundered by SP-BSP for 15 years and we have come with a pledge to transform the state," he said.

Before unveiling the document, Shah said, "We have tried to take views and aspirations of a cross section of people and in the process contacted people through different means (before drafting the manifesto)."
The document focuses on farmers' welfare, he said, adding agricultural loans will be waived once BJP comes to power. He also said a Special Task Force will be set up to put an end to illegal mining in the state.

Shah said on lines of central government's decision, no interview will be held for Class III and IV UP government jobs to end corruption in recruitment if BJP comes to power.

The manifesto promised free education up to Class 12 and waiver of fees up to graduation level to meritorious students. Shah said food processing parks would be set up in UP and power would be supplied round the clock in the state with cheaper rates for the poor.

"We will provide laptops to all students without any discrimination," he said. Shah also said special focus would be given to Bundelkhand for its all round development. He expressed hope that UP would get the strongest government since Independence when BJP gets over 300 (of the 403 seats).

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