Party won’t meddle with AAP subsidies: Electric scooters, clean water in BJP manifesto

Gadkari, Javadekar, Vardhan and Tiwari at the launch Friday. (Express photo: Prem Nath Pandey)

Free electric scooters for women from poor families enrolling in college, clean tap water in every household and jobs for one family member of 1984 riot victims, are among the promises featured in the BJP manifesto released Friday.

Delhi BJP chief Manoj Tiwari further said that if they come to power, existing subsidies on water, electricity and other schemes will also continue. Currently, 200 units of power are free, along with 20 kilolitres of water, and bus rides for women, and the BJP doesn’t intend to meddle with that — despite several leaders having panned subsidies in the past.

The party has also promised good quality wheat flour for Rs 2 per kilogram for the poor in its ‘Delhi Sankalp Patra’, along with jobs to one child each of victims of 1984 riots. The document was released in the presence of Union Ministers Nitin Gadkari, Prakash Javadekar, Harsh Vardhan, party’s Delhi unit president Manoj Tiwari and MPs.
Addressing the media, Gadkari said the party will run the “bullet train” of development in the capital.

“We will complete Delhi-Mumbai highway in next three years. It will cut short the road distance between the two metro cities to just 12 hours,” he said.

The party has tried to reach out to women voters and cut the AAP’s voter base which benefitted from the free bus rides scheme, by offering scooters and bicycles to college and school students. “Poor girl students from Class IX to XII will be provided free bicycles and college students will be given electric scooters. The government will also give a gift of Rs 51,000 to the daughters of poor widows on marriage,” said Tiwari.

It also touches on issues like education, sanitation, and easy loans for those employed in the unorganised sectors. “As no new college has come up in the national capital in the last five years, the youth of Delhi are forced to go to other cities to study as a result of which many families have to bear disappointment. BJP stands with such families and we promise that we will build 10 new colleges in Delhi,” reads the manifesto.

The BJP has been attacking AAP over its “failure” to build new schools and colleges even as the latter has pointed to an improvement in the quality of education and new classrooms built over the past five years.

The manifesto said that the BJP government at the Centre has implemented the Lokpal Act and it will remain a priority in Delhi.

On the environment front, the BJP promised the induction of 10,000 ‘green’ buses in Delhi. For traders, the manifesto promises administrative and legal measures to prevent sealing. Sealing in Delhi has led to hundreds of shops being shut. There is no mention of statehood in the manifesto.

AAP Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh called the manifesto a ‘Jumla Patr’. “This manifesto clearly says all welfare schemes being run for common people today will be closed down if BJP comes to power. 200 units of free electricity, 20,000 litres of free water, free bus rides for women — all these will be shut down by the BJP. So, basically, it’s not a manifesto, but a scheme to completely ruin the lives of the people of Delhi,” he said.

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