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Congress To Promise Right To Employment To Youth, Stringent Punishment For Paper Leak In Manifesto

NEW DELHI: Seeking to woo the country’s youth ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, the Congress will for the first time ever offer them the “right to employment” as part of its poll promise for the 2024 Lok Sabha elections besides mulling stringent punishment to those responsible for paper leaks in examinations. The party top leadership is likely to make an announcement on the ‘right to employment’ during a public rally at Badanawar in Madhya Pradesh, where both Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge and former party chief Rahul Gandhi will be present. Top party sources said the promises will be part of the Congress manifesto which is likely to be finalised soon, once the Congress Working Committee approves it.

“This is the first time ever that such a scheme to give ‘right to employment’ will be given to the youth of the country and some allowance may also be offered to the youth,” a source said, adding that even developed countries do not offer their youth such a scheme. The party would also provide for a stringent law and punishment against those responsible for paper leaks in the country and will suggest measures to bring transparency in government recruitments in its manifesto.

The measures come after Rahul Gandhi during the ‘Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra’ has focussed on the plight of lakhs of students suffering due to frequent paper leaks and cancellation of exams thereafter in some cases like in Uttar Pradesh. The thrust of the manifesto is likely to be on the 5-nyay (five pillars of justice) promised by the Congress during party leader Rahul Gandhi-led ‘Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra’, the sources said.

The party would also focus on giving legal guarantee to minimum support price and promising a caste-based census in the country for filling up the government vacancies. The Congress is likely to give a thrust to some welfare measures like providing financial assistance to marginalised sections of the society and ensuring that they get justice and be part of the state welfare measures.

This comes after the Congress promises made to the people helped the party get into power in states like Karnataka, Telangana and Himachal Pradesh recently. The Congress manifesto committee, headed by former union minister P. Chidambaram, met here to give a final shape to the manifesto for the Lok Sabha polls at a five-hour meeting this evening.

Several members of the party’s manifesto committee were present during the meeting at the AICC headquarters. Chidambaram said the committee has given final shape to the draft manifesto which will become the party document once the CWC approves the same. The panel wound up internal deliberations for giving final shape to the party manifesto which is likely to include some innovative measures like an apprenticeship scheme for the youth to deal with the issue of unemployment.

“We have completed our draft manifesto. It’s a draft. It will go to the Congress working committee. It is the Congress Working Committee which finalises the manifesto and then it becomes a Congress party document. At the moment, we have completed the work on the draft manifesto,” Chidambaram told reporters after the meeting.

“I hope to be able to present it to the Congress president along with members available in Delhi sometime tomorrow,” he added. The party’s manifesto committee also has senior leaders like Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, Shashi Tharoor and Anand Sharma, among others. Vadra and Sharma were, however, not present in the meetings held on Monday and Tuesday.

Among those who participated in the discussions on Tuesday include Chidambaram and Tharoor, minority chief head Imran Pratapgarhi, Ranjeet Ranjan and Gurdeep Sappal. Pratapgarhi after the meeting said, “We had taken views from all across the country and compiled it accordingly. It combines everything, youth women, unemployment, inflation etc.” “It will go now to the CWC and will notify upon issued,” said Ranjan.

Sources also said the party manifesto will focus on empowering the youth, women, poor and farmers. They added the party is mulling a plan to tackle the menace of paper leaks and is likely to present its vision for bringing about transparency in government recruitments. The 16-member panel includes Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and former union minister Jairam Ramesh while former Chhattisgarh deputy chief minister TS Singh Deo is its convenor.

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