TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday released what she described as a ‘development-oriented’ manifesto and not just a grocery list of political pledges. By doing so, she was almost taking a cue from PM Modi’s philosophy of ‘sab ka vikas.’
“This is a manifesto of the people, for the people, and by the people. I humbly present my 10 ‘Ongikars’ to build a stronger and more prosperous Bengal, so that the wheels of development remain well-oiled in the third term of government. The aim is to position Bengal as one of the leading states in the country,” said Mamata.
Touching what is a raw nerve in the BJP, she said grappling with unemployment will be the pivot of her policies. “If voted to power, the TMC government will create 5 lakh jobs in a year.’’ She picked on yet another strand of the Modi dispensation – cash doles and the transfer of the monies directly to the account of the beneficiary. So, for the first time, every family in Bengal will be entitled to minimum basic income. Under this, 1.6 crore a general category family will get Rs 500 a month, whereas an SC/ST family will get Rs 1,000. Mamata’s masterstroke is that the amount will be transferred to the account of the woman head of a family.
Reaching out to the youth, she has promised to start student credit cards so that they can avail education loans up to Rs 10 lakhs at a minimal interest rate of four percent. Another pledge, which will get traction, is ration at doorstep.
She has also promised 10 lakh MSMEs and 2000 big industrial units in the next five years.