Women laud Congress’ manifesto 'Shakti Vidhan'
The manifesto for women released by the Congress National General Secretary and Uttar Pradesh in-charge Priyanka Gandhi on December 8 has been getting an overwhelming response from the women
The manifesto for women, released by the Congress National General Secretary and Uttar Pradesh in-charge Priyanka Gandhi on December 8 has been getting an overwhelming response from women as they claim it had never happened in the annals of Indian polity.
“This is the first time that a political party is thinking about women. The parties have used our votes to come to power but had never spared a thought for the welfare of women. At least, a beginning has been made,” said Raja Bhaiya, convener of an NGO Vidya Dham Samiti, that works for the welfare of the masses.
Rita Bishayee, vice-president of another Lucknow-based NGO Bondhu Mahal Samiti, said that the manifesto is the true reflection of the spirit that women can fight against injustice.
“This is a great beginning. Compassion, kindness, and hope are the qualities of women. These qualities are also an integral part of politics. An environment should be created for women to have their say. This would be women empowerment in the true sense,” she said.
The NGOs, which work specifically for the welfare of women say that the fighting spirit shown by women is immense.
Raja Bhaiya, whose organisation trained the women who returned from big cities to their native villages in Banda district during the lockdown, said women have shown the resilience to fight back when pushed to the wall. When they lost livelihood in big cities after the closure of industries, these women took to agriculture in villages and are now doing well.
“The slogan "Ladki Hoon, Lad Sakti hoon", is the true reflection of the grit and determination shown by women,” he said and added that the Congress manifesto shows the same spirit.
The Congress national general secretary released the party’s manifesto for women 'Shakti Vidhan' on December 8 promising 40 per cent reservation to women in the state government jobs if voted to power in 2022 assembly polls. 'Shakti Vidhan' has been divided into six parts – self-respect, self-reliance, education, respect, security, and health.
Nomita P Kumar, a social scientist with Giri Institute of Development Studies in Lucknow said that the best part of the manifesto is the plan to empower women by extending economic support to them. "The manifesto says that the businesswomen will be provided funds for loans and tax refunds at affordable rates. Ration shops will be owned by women, this will give them a sense of economic empowerment,” she said.
Congress has promised in the manifesto that class twelve girl students will be given smart phones and Scooty will be given to girl students pursuing graduation if the party forms the government in Uttar Pradesh. It has also been announced to give three free cylinders of LPG to women annually. An announcement has also been made for free bus service for women and the appointment of 40 per cent women according to the provisions of reservation in new government posts.
Along with this, an honorarium of Rs 10,000 per month to Anganwadi and ASHA workers will be given and old age and widow pension will be increased to Rs 1,000. 75 skill schools in the name of veterans in the state will also be established, the manifesto promises.