BJP launches campaign to seek people’s views for manifesto

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New Delhi, Feb 3 (IANS) The BJP on Sunday launched a campaign to seek suggestions and voters’ expectations for a “new India” from 10 crore families across the country before giving a final shape to its election manifesto for the Lok Sabha polls.

The ‘Bharat ke mann ki baat, Modi ke saath’ campaign was launched here at Ashoka Hotel by Bharatiya Janata Party President Amit Shah and Home Minister Rajnath Singh, who is also in-charge of party’s manifesto committee, in the presence of several Union ministers and senior party leaders.

“This is a unique campaign in the history of India’s electoral process. Through this campaign, the BJP will reach out to the masses and contact 10 crore families seeking their suggestions,” Shah told a press conference.

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He said the month-long campaign would also seek voters’ expectations about “new India”.

“Over 300 LED-equipped vans will be deployed across the country and over 7,700 boxes will be taken to 4,000 assemblies to seek people’s views,” he said, adding that each state will have a 20-member team to collect and collate information and suggestions.

He said suggestions would also be sought on social media through WhatsApp, Twitter and Facebook.

Shah said manifestos were earlier taken lightly and that the BJP wanted to change that perception.

“We are different from other parties in the country. We have internal democratic system unlike family-run or caste-based parties. We function based on ideology rather than votebank,” he said, adding the exercise was aimed at democratizing the process of preparing the manifesto.

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Home Minister Rajnath Singh said such a pre-manifesto campaign is unprecedented. He outlined 12 areas including farmers, youth, women, developpment, good governance and national security where the party would focus on while preparing the manifesto.

He said the party has appointed 12 senior leaders to oversee the suggestions for these areas. They include former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Union Ministers Arun Jaitley, Smriti Irani, Prakash Javadekar, Thawar Chand Gehlot, Dr Harashvardhan, Hardeep Puri and Vinay Sahasrabuddhe among others.

He said, the election manifesto committee set up under his Chairmanship will incorporate the suggestions after consulting all stakeholders. He also enumerated Modi’s achievements in the various fields including economic, internal security, foreign policy, cultural heritage and women empowerment.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has described the initiative as a unique effort and urged all to take part in the campaign.

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“Participative democracy is an article of faith for our party. We have always worked towards becoming an effective voice for the rights and well-being of each and every Indian and to build a strong and prosperous India,” he tweeted.

The BJP also launched a film to hardsell its outreach programme with a slogan ‘Kam kare jo, umeed usi se’.

–IANS

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