Bhubaneswar, April 9 (IANS) Keeping its options open, the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) on Tuesday said in its manifesto that it would back a Central government that “supports the legitimate rights of Odisha”.
“This time no national party will get a majority on its own. Odisha will have a role in the formation of the Central Government. The BJD will support a government that backs the legitimate rights of Odisha. This will be our only agenda with the Central Government,” said the BJD manifesto released by party president Naveen Patnaik here.
Alleging that successive Central governments have neglected the rights of Odisha, the manifesto said this neglect has led to Odisha being at the bottom of all Central subjects such as telecom, railways, banking and national highways.
“What could have been a more cruel joke on Odisha by the BJP than the promise of Special Category status? The number one manifesto promise of BJP in 2014 was forgotten for five years and finds no mention in the present manifesto,” it said.
The party said Special Category Status is the only way to rectify the historic neglect that Odisha has suffered.
Releasing the manifesto, Patnaik said his party fulfils all promises made in the manifesto unlike other parties, specially the Bharatiya Janata Party.
The manifesto promised 75% reservation in jobs in all upcoming industries in Odisha for qualified local youth and assistance for women and farmers.
It said 15 lakh youth will be skilled in the next 5 years and one time startup allowance at the rate of Rs 10 lakh will be provided to 10,000 eligible youth.
It said Krushak Assistance for Livelihood and Income Augmentation (KALIA) scheme will continue for farmers and landless agricultural labourers while interest-free crop loan up to Rs 1 lakh will be provided.
The manifesto also promised to provide 5,000 crore government work every year to the Self Help Groups (SHGs), zero interest loan up to Rs 5 lakh to all the SHGs.
It also promised to hike medical assistance for women under Biju Swasthya Kalyan Yojana (BSKY) from Rs 7 lakh to Rs 10 lakh.
To reduce regional disparities, the party said special development councils will be set up in eight districts and three sub-divisions.