New Delhi : With rights-based approach paying dividends, Congress is expected to extend it to health and employment sectors as well in its manifesto for the Lok Sabha polls, which seems to a difficult challenge this time.

The party is also considering bringing into force certain type of affirmative action in the private sector given the fact that government jobs are drying up in the post liberalisation period. The party manifesto is expected to be released next week.

Rahul Gandhi’s push to create some kind of minimum financial security to 70 crore people falling in the layer between the middle class and the below poverty line will also find some concrete formulation in the party’s poll document.

There is a view in the party that this segment comprising artisans and lower income professional groups, domestic and migrant workers, could become the party’s support base at a time when the urban middle class appears to have tilted towards BJP.

While the National Rural Health Mission is an ambitious programme to reach out to the rural poor, this time Congress plans to give a legal backing to seek health services to common man across the country.

A meeting of the manifesto committee, which has A K Antony as its chairman had its meeting today. Members of the committee presented their sets of recommendations to the panel.

Union Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad’s inputs had been sought to prepare a comprehensive guaranteed health service for all citizens at a time when private medicare has become expensive and public hospitals are overcrowded.

With the country witnessing growing urbanisation, the manifesto is also likely to promise certain basic minimum civic facilities to all citizens.                      – PTI

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