Bengaluru: The JD(S) on Thursday released its “Janata Pranalike” (People’s Manifesto) for the May 10 Assembly polls in Karnataka promising to restore four per cent reservation for Muslims, to “throw out” Amul and to save Nandini brand calling it Kannadiga’s identity, among various assurances.
The party led by former Prime Minister H D Deve Gowda has also assured to bring in a law reserving jobs for Kannadigas in the private sector, and has promised to provide free higher education for economically-weaker students.
Just ahead of the announcement of polls in Karnataka, the State Cabinet led by Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai had decided to scrap the four per cent reservation for Muslims under the Other Backward Classes (OBC) quota and to distribute it equally among the dominant Vokkaliga and Lingayat communities. The JD(S) in its manifesto has expressed its commitment to restore 4 per cent reservation for Muslims.
The promise to protect and strengthen Nandini brand in the manifesto, comes following a controversy that had erupted after the Gujarat-based dairy cooperative Amul’s announcement recently, to enter the Karnataka market to supply its milk and curd.
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A section including opposition Congress and JD(S) had expressed apprehension that Nandini, the brand from the Karnataka Milk Federation (KMF), could be merged with Amul, and had targeted the ruling BJP and Union Cooperative Minister Amit Shah for it. BJP had rejected the charge.
The manifesto was released by JD(S) legislature party leader H D Kumaraswamy, state president C M Ibrahim, and manifesto committee chief and MLC B M Farooq, among other leaders.
The JD(S), which positions itself as a party of farmers, has announced the “Raita Bandhu” scheme promising to provide Rs 2,000 to agricultural labour families every month. Also, girls who marry youths who are farmers will be given financial assistance of Rs two lakh.
Among the various other assurances given in JD(S) manifesto are Rs 6,000 for pregnant women for six months, loan waiver for ‘Stree Shakti’ self-help groups, pension for Anganwadi workers, Rs 2,000 per month for auto drivers, Rs 2,000 for registered private security guards, and up to Rs 25 lakh for treatment of rare diseases under CM relief fund.
In the irrigation sector, the party has listed out its plans such as: increase funds for the Upper Bhadra Project from existing Rs 2,000 crore to Rs 5,000 crore and also complete the project in the next four years; it also promised to complete the ‘Yettinahole’ project in four years.
Reviewing the National Pension Scheme, re-introduction of free bicycles for school children, electric scooters for girls studying in higher education, housing scheme for 30 lakh homeless, encouraging green energy, are among the other takeaways from the manifesto.
Kumaraswamy has said that the party will launch a separate manifesto for Bengaluru in the coming days.
Aiming to come to power on its own, the JD(S) has set a target of winning 123 out of total 224 Assembly seats.