Equal rights for all religions, industrial growth on LF's draft manifesto for Bengal polls

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Kolkata, Mar 11 (PTI) The Left Front (LF) on Thursday came out with a 'draft manifesto' for the West Bengal assembly elections, asserting that it will ensure safety and security of all minorities and frame policies for the state's industrial development, if voted to power.

The CPI(M)-led front, which has formed an alliance with the Congress and newly-floated ISF, also said that it would work towards re-establishing democracy in the state and not implement 'repressive laws' brought into force by the BJP, such as the ones on cow slaughter and 'love jihad'.

The draft has been forwarded to alliance partners Congress and Abbas Siddique-led ISF, the front stated, maintaining that their views and opinions, too, will find a place in the final manifesto.

Claiming that both the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Trinamool Congress (TMC) are playing the communal card to polarise the state's populace, the front said that it would strictly abide by the principles of the Constitution, and ensure equal rights for all religions.

The Left Front, which ruled West Bengal for a record 34 years, contended that its fight against 'the Centre's anti-people policies will continue'.

Stress will be laid on small and medium enterprises for job creation, and policies would be framed to bring in large industries to the state, the draft said, adding that the success of previous Left Front governments in the matter will be kept in consideration.

The manifesto also promised to fill up vacancies in the state government.

At least 20 per cent of the state budget will be allotted for education, it said, while asserting that the National Education Policy, 2020 will not be implemented in West Bengal.

Claiming that severe drawbacks in the state's healthcare infrastructure have come to the fore amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the draft further said 'priority will be accorded to epidemic control and disease preventive measures'.