The Congress on Monday said the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) instead of coming out with a manifesto should have issued an apology letter to the people of India for failing to fulfil the promises it had made in 2014.
The Congress pointed out that the BJP manifesto has omitted to roll out the ‘direct tax code’, largely ignored making any commitments on job generation and tried to “fool” farmers with its promise of Rs 1 lakh zero interest loan, but is insistent that they make “prompt payments” of the principal.
Congress leader Ahmed Patel highlighted the Congress’ thrust on promising justice to people if voted to power and said the BJP document was “lies versus justice”.
The Congress social media team had a field day ridiculing some of the bloopers in the BJP manifesto, including one in the section on women’s security. On page 34 of the BJP’s vision document, it states that the Modi government constituted the women’s security division in the home ministry, “and have made strict provisions for transferring the laws in order to commit crimes against women…”
Political parties pointed out that the BJP manifesto has little or no mention of addressing problems of agricultural labour, banking sector crisis, demonetisation and unemployment crisis. The Congress said its manifesto made job generation as its first priority, but the BJP had harped on its “pseudo-nationalism”, while dismissing the problem of joblessness in a couple of paragraphs.
Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said the manifesto is nearly silent on demonetisation and GST, and on black money, a key plank of the BJP in 2014. He said the BJP had promised 20 million jobs a year, instead its tenure has seen job losses of 47 million.
Surjewala said the BJP’s promise of doubling farmers’ income is a charade as it will take 28 years at the current agricultural growth rate of 2.9 per cent. He said the BJP failed to deliver on its promise of bringing Rs 80 trillion black money in the first 100 days of its government at the Centre, while several economic offenders have fled the country in the last five years.
Congress leaders said the BJP has failed to provide any vision for increasing exports, lacks a plan for resolution of NPAs, or non-performing assets of banks or a road map of how it might simplify GST.
It said the BJP is also mostly silent on any schemes for OBCs, SCs and STs. The BJP has promised 33 per cent reservation for women in Parliament and legislative assemblies but did not pass that Bill in the last five years, Congress leaders said.