Shimla: Promising clean and transparent governance for a self-reliant Himachal, the BJP manifesto that was released today speaks about considering administrative exigencies for making new districts as well as reorganizing the old ones.Highlighting the manifestoâ€™s main points, Jai Ram Thakur, party president said employment generation was high priority and qualitative technical education would be stressed upon for improving chances of youth employability.
Working for a self reliant Himachal the government would carefully exploit the available opportunities in power and tourism sector, said Thakur. Production of hydro generation would be stepped up and the royalty earned would help to spare adding to the tax burden of the people. Micro-hydel projects would be reserved mostly for Himachalis.
The BJP committed to set up an medical college in Mandi district and the manifesto stated that a dental college, a Ayurvedic college, an IIT, a central university and a technical education would be opened in other districts, as per the requirements of the state.
Sex education would be replaced by Yoga education even as education itself would be reoriented and made Bharat (India) centric, the document stated.
Toll tax barriers at the entry points of Himachal would be rationalized. The manifesto came out against multinationals and big industrial houses being allowed to enter the retail sector or set up malls.
On the contentious issues of forming new districts and regularizing encroachments that had faced resistance in the last tenure of the Dhumal government, the manifesto states the need based administrative reforms would be carried out and creating new districts and reorganizing old ones would be considered.
On encroachments the policy paper states that encroachment of common lands for the very poor will be regularized under a transparent policy.
For state employees a definite and transparent transfer policy would be framed and benefits of 6th Pay commission of Punjab would be implemented.
The government would work to extend the industrial package for the state to its original date of 2013 and ensure that 70 percent of the jobs in the industrial sector were kept aside for state residents. Daily wages of workers would be lined to inflation rates.
Farmers faced with the problem of wild animals, especially monkeys damaging crops did find an echo in the manifesto. The party committed that crops would be protected from wild boars and monkeys, if necessary, crop guards would be employed at villages.
To improve farm incomes a shift from traditional agriculture practices would be made possible by introducing high value crops like floriculture and growing of herbs. The BJP intends to continue with the market intervention scheme for the benefit of the horticulture sector.
As the state faced long drought spells, the manifesto stated that a master plan for conservation of water for irrigation would be drawn up.
Besides Thakur, chief minister designate Prem Kumar Dhumal, former chief minister Shanta Kumar, party general secretary Muktar Abbas Naqvi and state BJP incharge Satpal Jain were also present on the occasion.
As Editor, Ravinder Makhaik leads a team of media professionals at Hill Post.
Spanning a career of over two decades in mass communication, as a Documentary Filmmaker, TV journalist, Print Media journalist and with Online & Social Media, he brings with him a vast experience. He lives in Shimla.