UDF promises Re 1 a kg rice to BPL families
Posted on: 25 Mar 2011
Kochi: Congress-led UDF in Kerala has promised 36 lakh jobs, Re one a kg rice for BPL families, farm loans at
three per cent interest and free bi-cycles to class X students in its manifesto for the April 13 Assembly elections, released
today after ironing out differences with two of its partners over seat allocations.
The manifesto promised to provide 25 kg of rice at Re one to Below Poverty Line families and at Rs two per kg to other
ration card holders.
The grievances of the Communist Marxist Party (CMP) led by former minister M V Raghavan and Socialist Janata (Democratic) of M P Veerendra Kumar have been 'amicably' sorted out, front leaders told reporters here.
CMP would be contesting in Nenmara, Kunnamkulam and Dharmadam seats after it surrendered Nattika, offered earlier.
The party had on Wednesday rejected the offer of --Nattika, Kunnamkulam and Dharmadam seats -- and decided to
stay away from polls saying the three seats were traditionally strongholds of LDF.
SJ(D) would put up candidates in six constituencies --Vatakara, Nemom, Mattannur, Kuthuparamba, Kalpetta and Elathur, Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly Oommen Chandy, KPCC Presdient Ramesh Chennithala and UDF Convenor P P
The Congress will decide on the candidate for Nattika after consulting the party high command. With the addition of this
seat, the party would be contesting 82 seats in the polls.
Chandy said the Congress had fielded sitting MLA in Chittor and so could not accept the demand of SJ(D) for that seat and
CMP's demand for Azhikode also was not acceptable to it.
Other salient features of the manifesto are setting up of pepper and horticulture boards, backdoor appointments to be
reconsidered, interest-free loans for purchasing computers and motorbikes for students, making Kochi metro project a reality,
ensuring electricity connections to all households within one year and exploitation by opearators of other state lotteries
to be stopped.
Stating that protest meetings and demonstrations were held in some places against the Congress candidates list approved
by party high command, Chennithala warned that disciplinary action would be taken against party workers who continued
with such agitations. There was widespread discontent in the party over Sebastian's candidature, but the party stuck to its decision. In shornur, there were reports that the front would support M R Murali, leader of Janakeeya Vikasana Samithi, a platform of CPI(M) rebels, who was expelled following his decision to cosy up to the Congress.
Later addressing a meet-the-press programme organised bythe Ernakulam Press club, Chandy said the UDF was facing
the elections with 'full confidence'. The manifesto was a continuation of the programmes of the previous UDF rule. Stressing on the development plank, he said the UDF regime had organised the Global Investors Meet showcasing Kerala's strength. 'We should welcome investors, not drive them away,' he said. Aout Rs 50,000 crore investment proposals were received
after the GIM, but the LDF Government which came to power in 2006 failed to capitalise on them, he claimed. 'Development and Care' was the UDF agenda in the current polls, he said, adding that development should reach all sections of the society, it should be transparent and eco-friendly. A proper rehabiliation package for those whose lands are taken up for various projects was needed and they should be the first beneficiaries of the project, he said.
There was need to bring in more investments, create more employment opportunities. Lashing out at Chief Minister V S Achutanandan for his 'revengeful' attitude towards the opposition, Chandy said UDF leaders would not be scared by 'intimidations' that they would be sent to prisons. Let the law take its course in instances where cases had been filed against opposition leaders, Chandy said in apparent reaction to Achuthanandan's remarks that corrupt politicians and sexual exploiters. Referring to the Palmolein graft case in which a vigilance court has ordered further investigation, Chandy said the Chief Minister had not stated so far what evidence he had against him (Chandy) now. No action had been taken for 20 years, he said. On the UDF's opposition to LDF Government's implementation of Rs two per kg rice, he said the front was not against the scheme but the manner in which it was being used during poll time. This was only an 'election stunt' of the LDF, he said.