Education, Jobs & Healthcare: What The Congress Manifesto Has To Offer
On April 2, the Congress party released its manifesto for the 2019 general elections, with the tagline “Congress Will Deliver”. The Congress Chief Rahul Gandhi launched the party manifesto in the presence of Sonia Gandhi, former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Priyanka Gandhi, and other big leaders.
Today we released #CongressManifesto2019, through which resonates the voice of thousands of Indians we spoke to, as a part of our exhaustive consultative process.
This manifesto lists our commitments to the people of India.
— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) April 2, 2019
The party has held 121 public consultations and 53 closed-door consultations to prepare the manifesto and said that it reflects the hope of the people. The manifesto committee was headed by former Finance Minister P Chidambaram.
Stressing on the decline of employment rate, Chidambaram said, “Our manifesto is focused on real issue of jobs”. The manifesto was classified into six different sections titled Kaam, Daam, Shaan, Samman, Suhasan and Swabhiman.
Let’s have a look at what the manifesto offers on welfare issues:
Nyuntam Aay Yojana (NYAY)
The party president Rahul Gandhi said that with the help of NYAY scheme, the party will try to push the economy of the country which got “jammed” after the Demonetisation. The party announced the NYAY scheme on March 25, according to which, the minimum income support scheme (MISP) promises to provide Rs 72,000 annually to 20% families in poorest of the poor category, thus helping 25 crore people. However, NYAY Scheme will go through a testing phase of 6-9 months before it kicks in.
The party said that they will create jobs in both the private and public sector. The party said that creation of jobs tops their priority list. According to the manifesto, the party will fill all 4 lakh central government posts before March 2020 and persuade the state government to fill their 20 lakh vacancies. The manifesto read – “Our pledge is jobs, jobs, jobs. Congress will fill all 4 lakh Central Government and institutional vacancies before March 2020, create an estimated 10 lakh seva mitra positions in every gram panchayat and urban local body, launch a ‘Water Bodies Restoration Mission’ and ‘Wasteland Regeneration Mission’ to create 1 crore jobs, exempt new businesses from applicable laws and regulations (except Minimum Wages Act and tax laws) for a period of 3 years, encourage State Governments to fill their vacancies, reward businesses for job creation, provide businesses with fiscal incentives for employing more women, and require businesses with over 100 employees to start an apprenticeship programme.”
Congress promised that it will enact the Right to Healthcare Act and provide every citizen free diagnostics, out-patient care, free medicines and hospitalisation at listed private and public hospitals. One of the major highlighting factors in the healthcare sector listed in the Congress manifesto is – “Congress promises that the total government expenditure on healthcare will be doubled to 3 per cent of GDP by the year 2023-24. The Annual Budgets will indicate the step up in each year in order to achieve the target in 2023-24”
The party has also promised that if they come to power they will increase the expenditure behind education. The party’s manifesto stated the party will double the allocation to 6% of GDP by 2023-24. The manifesto also said that the party will propose that School Education be transferred to the State List in the Seventh Schedule of the Constitution while retaining the subject of Higher Education in the Union List.