Editorial: April 10, 2019

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Words and deeds: Election Manifesto 2019

Every election season, promises by various political parties fall like monsoon shower. Talking about major parties at the national level, BJP promised to implement Citizenship Amendment Bill despite  strong protests in different parts of North East India while the Congress pledges to follow a ‘wealth and  welfare’ approach if voted to power. The BJP claimed that it decided to implement CAB for the  protection of individuals who fled the neighbouring countries and victims of religious persecution.

 

Some of the promises made by the BJP are to solve the Sabrimala controversy and to make a country its citizens wanted to be in 2047 when the India will celebrate its centenary jubilee of independence. BJP also said that the next 5 years will be termed as the foundation laying period for India for 2047  if the party is elected to power.

On the other hand, Congress mainly talked about development and pledged to increase the working days of NREGA scheme from 100 to 150 days. The scheme was introduced by the Congress led UPA government way back in 2005. The party also promised to introduce Nyuntam Aay Yojana (NYAY) scheme under which poorest families will get an amount of Rs.72,000 and the amount will be  transferred to the woman in the household. The Congress also pledged to review the controversial AFSPA that that gives unprecedented power to armed forces in areas like Jammu & Kashmir and some parts of North East India.

Both major political parties of the country pledge to fight against unemployment problems, farmers’  crisis, and crime against women and pledged to provide better facilities to its citizens through healthcare  education and others.

Election manifestos are important both for political parties as well as its citizens. Political parties  make promises to woo voters. Political parties rely on manifestos once they come to power and the voters rely on the same to see if those parties are sincere and kept their promises.

Talking about Karbi Anglong, five political parties are fighting for the berth including BJP and Congress. The district has three regional parties like Autonomous State Demand Committee (ASDC), All Party Hills Leaders’ Conference (APHLC) and National People’s Party.

ASDC promised to fight for implementation of Article 244 (A), the long cherished dream of the people of Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao. The party also pledged to uplift indigenous people and to restore their lost powers. On the other hand, the APHLC promised to strengthen the power of Sixth Schedule, making of voters’ lists, strengthening of customary laws and protection of indigenous tribes in the district.

In one way, it is a good thing that few in India take election manifesto quite seriously. If political parties had been serious and implemented whatever was in the manifesto, Indians would be living in a very comfortable life with every facility at their feet. Even though some of the promises have been made, there are many that are forgotten as well.

Whatever it may be, the citizens of India are watching closely as to which party are sincere with their promises for only democracy can generate a efficient balance among conflicting sectional demands.