The Congress believes it lost the 2012 Punjab elections to the Shiromani Akali Dal’s populism. This time, however, the party manifesto for the February 4 elections promises the moon to voters, leaving no section untouched from youth to chowkidars (watchmen).
Congress manifesto for Punjab was released by the former PM at party headquarters here in the presence of top state leaders including Punjab Congress chief Amarinder Singh and Rajinder Bhattal, the chairperson of the manifesto drafting panel of Punjab Congress.
Speaking at the event, Manmohan Singh said “Punjab is a state with tremendous unexploited potential and it’s not been exploited because of mismanagement of the government in the last 10 years…”
“Earlier also Punjab was victim of terrorism and it inflicted great deal damage on the economy and polity of Punjab and the challenge before Punjab is to rise above all and recognize people of Punjab for need of a better tomorrow.”
The 120-page manifesto, drafted after six months of consultations with the people from all walks of life, was simultaneously released in Delhi, Chandigarh and five other cities in Punjab.
Dr. Singh said Capt. Amarinder was a leader of great vision who has a wealth of experience and commitment to the cause of development in the State.
Punjab’s fiscal situation had been bad under the Akalis as the State had inflicted great damage on the economy and polity of Punjab being a victim of terrorism.
“Amarinder’s government will undo all this damage and set a new pathway for a better tomorrow which will see that people will have. A higher per capita Income, better distribution of Income, better employment prospects and better infrastructure,” Dr. Singh said.
The manifesto promises loan waiver and free power to farmers, the wiping out of drug trade within a month, stipend of Rs. 2,500 a month to unemployed youth, free smartphones to youth and free textbooks to all children.
Capt. Amarinder Singh announced that the State would generate as many as 25 lakh jobs within the next five years so as to provide employment to all youth in the State.