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Priyanka flags off ‘Pratigya Yatras’ in Uttar Pradesh, makes poll promises

Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi clicks a picture with supporters during her visit to Valmiki temple in New Delhi, Thursday, Oct. 21, 2021.   | Photo Credit: PTI

Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Saturday flagged off her party’s “Pratigya Yatras” from Uttar Pradesh’s Barabanki with seven promises, including loan waiver for farmers and jobs to 20 lakh people, if voted to power in next year’s Assembly polls.

The party also promised purchase of wheat and paddy at ₹2,500 per quintal, and sugarcane at ₹400 per quintal. The Congress leader also said that her party would “halve the electricity bill of all”.

She said her party will bring a separate manifesto for women, reiterating that the Congress will give “40% tickets to women in the elections”.

Ms. Gandhi Vadra said the Congress would give smartphones to girls who passed Class 12, if voted to power in the State.

The party said it will give ₹25,000 to families who faced financial crunch due to the COVID crisis. Ms. Gandhi Vadra promised a separate manifesto for women in a week's time and stressed that their participation in politics is necessary.

“Till they do not move forward and participate in politics, they will not be able to fight their battles,” she said.

Ms. Gandhi Vadra said providing smartphones and scooters to girls is a way to make them empowered.

“Smartphones can help in their safety and scooter will facilitate their movement,” she said.

Referring to farmers, the AICC general secretary said they are helpless in the state.

“All have seen how farmers were killed brutally by the son of a minister in the Modi government. This in itself proves how much importance is being given to farmers,” she said referring to the Lakhimpur Kheri violence.

“How long it took to arrest the accused and his father, who is saving him, is still in the Modi government and not dismissed,” she said.

“Farmers know what all they have been facing since the past a few years. It is because of this that we have decided to waive their loans. Earlier too, the Congress had waived loans worth Rs 72,000 crore,” she said.

Ms. Gandhi Vadra said on the lines of Congress-led Chhattisgarh government, which is purchasing paddy at Rs 2,500 per quintal, here too wheat and paddy will be purchased at the same price if her party was voted to power.

Farmers will get ₹400 per quintal for sugarcane, she added.

On electricity bills, she said during the coronavirus crisis, small traders were worst affected and yet had to pay their power bill.

“So, it has been decided to waive the pending bills of the coronavirus period besides halving the bills of all,” she said.

She said ₹25,000 will be given to poor families to help them overcome their financial losses during the coronavirus crisis.

Priyanka said they will also regularise services of teachers, health workers and others if voted to power.

Faced with the Herculean task to improve the party’s tally in Uttar Pradesh, the Congress had in the last Assembly polls won only seven seats.

The party's yatras will be taken out on three different routes — Barabanki to Bundelkhand, Saharanpur to Mathura and Varanasi to Rae Bareli — from October 23 to November 1 with the slogan, "Hum Vachan Nibhayenge".

The party intends to reach out to women, farmers and unemployed in Uttar Pradesh, where Ms. Gandhi Vadra has been working to regain the party's lost ground.

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Printable version | Dec 7, 2021 7:00:43 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/priyanka-gandhi-flags-off-pratigya-yatras-from-ups-barabanki/article37137487.ece

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