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Explained: In BJP manifesto, a stress on nationalism, eye on 2022 and beyond

Every speaker on Monday highlighted at length the NDA government's achievements on the economic front. The party said it aspired to make India the world's third-largest economy by 2030, adding, "This implies that we commit to make India a USD 5 trillion economy by 2025 and USD 10 trillion economy by 2032."

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Nationalism is the strongest flavour in the BJP’s Sankalp Patra or manifesto that projects Prime Minister Narendra Modi as the strongest and most able leader for India in the 21st century. While Rajnath Singh, chairman of the manifesto committee, listed 75 milestones that India has to achieve by 2022 when the country celebrates its 75th anniversary of Independence, Modi said 2019-24 would be a time to “lay the foundation” for 2047, the 100th year of India’s Independence.

The function to release the document was an occasion to project the BJP as a party with a difference. “This is not prepared with a tukde-tukde mindset, it’s not prepared with an ivy league mindset, but with a strong nationalist vision,” Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said.

VIDEO | BJP unveils 2019 manifesto

Party chief Amit Shah said while bringing the economy on track, the Prime Minister had shown the world how a scam-free administration can be run. “PM Modi has struck the source of terrorism and sent a message to the world that no one can play around with the borders of the country,” he said.

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The BJP released its election manifesto in New Delhi on Monday. (Express photo: Neeraj Priyadarshi)

Read | BJP manifesto for 2019 Lok Sabha elections: National security, Ram temple, farmer welfare

Every speaker on Monday highlighted at length the NDA government’s achievements on the economic front. The party said it aspired to make India the world’s third-largest economy by 2030, adding, “This implies that we commit to make India a USD 5 trillion economy by 2025 and USD 10 trillion economy by 2032.”

Mindful of the potential that the distress in the farm sector has for spoiling its prospects in rural India, the BJP has reiterated in its 45-page ‘Sankalpit Bharat Sashakt Bharat’ document its promise to double the income of farmers by 2022. The manifesto also talks about inclusive development, with promises like a scheme for small shopkeepers, credit for artisans, and a house for all by 2022.

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On controversial issues, the party has trod cautiously. On the Ram Mandir, the manifesto says: “We reiterate our stand on Ram Mandir. We will explore all possibilities within the framework of the Constitution and all necessary efforts to facilitate the expeditious construction of the Ram Temple in Ayodhya.”

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On the issue of entry for women of all ages into the Sabarimala shrine, the Sankalp Patra says that the party would “endeavour to secure constitutional protection on issues related to faith and belief”. The manifesto has reiterated the BJP’s commitment to drafting a Uniform Civil Code — “BJP believes that there cannot be gender equality till such time India adopts a Uniform Civil Code, which protects the rights of all women.”

On Kashmir, the manifesto underlines that “We reiterate our position since the time of the Jan Sangh to the abrogation of Article 370”, and says that “We are committed to annulling Article 35A of the Constitution as the provision is discriminatory against non-permanent residents and women of Jammu and Kashmir.

“We believe that Article 35A is an obstacle in the development of the state.”

First published on: 08-04-2019 at 06:24:08 pm
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