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Secularism to farmers distress: Highlights of Shiv Sena-NCP-Cong’s Maharashtra promise

The CMP, which is seen as a working solution to bring three ideologically divergent parties on the same platform, provides a balanced mix of incentives and development push to rural sector, environment, education, job and health sectors.

Soon after taking over, the Shiv Sena-NCP-Congress alliance government in Maharashtra announced a common minimum programme (CMP) based on which they look forward to focus on in the next five years.

The CMP of the alliance named Maha Vikas Aghadi, is being seen as a working solution to bring the three ideologically divergent parties on the same platform. The CMP announced on Thursday provides a balanced mix of incentives and development push to rural sector, environment, education, job and health sectors. The alliance, with Uddhav Thackeray as its head, has also spelled out its commitment towards secularism and development of minorities in the CMP. Here are the highlights of the CMP.

Agriculture

* The CMP promises “immediate assistance to farmers suffering due to premature rains and floods” in the form of an immediate loan waiver. Unseasonal rain in early November had damaged standing crop on 93.89 lakh hectares of land, with 1.04 crore farmers suffering losses.

* The programme talks about revising the crop insurance scheme to ensure immediate compensation to farmers

* It mentions remunerative prices for farm produce.

* The programme also includes the construction of a sustainable water supply system for drought-hit areas.

Employment

* The CMP talks about filling all vacant posts in the Maharashtra government.

* It also aims to start a fellowship programme for the educated unemployed youth.

* The CMP is up for enacting a law to ensure 80 per cent reservation in jobs for local youth.

Education

* Girls from economically weaker sections to be given free college education.

* The CMP aims to provide education loans to children of farm labourers and students from the EWS community at zero interest rate.

Urban development

* The programme promises to improve roads through a scheme along the lines of the Chief Minister Gram Sadak Yojana.

* It also promises to provide slum dwellers eligible under the Slum Rehabilitation Programme tenements of 500 square feet carpet area free of cost instead of the 300 square feet tenements being provided at the moment.

Health

The three-party alliance also hopes to provide health insurance cover to every citizen of the state.

Environment

The CMP talks of looking into alternatives to felling of trees in Aarey to make way for Metro car shed. The rampant cutting of trees in the said area had triggered protests across the state with common people joining activists in their demand for saving the greenery.

Development of minorities

* The CMP said to be committed to the development of minority community by adopting schemes to eliminate their social, educational and economic backwardness.

* Asked about what would happen to the promise of 5% reservation to Muslims in jobs and education, NCP’s Jayant Patil said: “Things will happen at the opportune time.” In 2014, the Congress-NCP government had provided for the reservation, which was scrapped by the subsequent BJP government in which the Sena was an alliance partner.

Secularism

Secularism featured prominently in the CMP’s preamble, The parties said they wanted to work for all sections of society. “We want to work for the development of people. For us, secularism means that a Hindu is free to practice his faith and a Muslim his. We will be teaching those who have forgotten what secularism means,”
NCP spokesperson Nawab Malik said.

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