TODAY -

Party manifesto and unemployment allowance

Free Thinker *



I have never gone through a manifesto of any party thoroughly and seriously. When we were in the University I once tried to read 'The Communist Manifesto' of Shri Friedrich Engels ji and Shri Karl Marx ji. Originally it was the manifesto of the communist party in Europe in 1848; it was in the form of a pamphlet.

For me it was too complicated as it talks about class struggle and exploitation. In fact it completely confused me as I come from a classless egalitarian society - Manipur. It propagated more confusion when comparing class with caste.

Is manifesto still important when electorates don't even bother about it ? Today, I really don't understand the purpose of a manifesto. Is it simply an intellectual exercise ? The dictionary meaning of manifesto is–a public declaration of policy and objectives, especially one issued before an election by a political party or a candidate. Are they really serious about it ? Except for the manifesto preparing committee nobody reads it from cover to cover.

In the last general election, I was requested by a senior political leader to brief him on their party's manifesto. I told him frankly that I don't read the manifestos, but I gather the main contents of the manifestoes of main parties from the newspapers just for fun. He got the main points from 'Hindu'.

In every election, State or National, a manifesto is issued by the concerned parties. Political parties (State level or National level) tend to bring out the manifesto just before the elections. Basically a manifesto is a promise document or a projection document or simply proposed policies and proposals. I believe that everything that is included in the manifesto is really good for the people and society at large. If actually implemented, it will be amazing.

There are some exceptional things done at the National level by exceptional leaders, for instance–doing away with Article 370, abolition of triple talaq, allotment of land to Lord Ram, gratitude money to farmers, etc. Once you make some commitments and if you can deliver them, your credibility rate is higher. Uniform civil code, 5 trillion dollar economy, strongest military power etc are yet to come.

In the capital before the election Aam Admi were promised-free water, free electricity, free wi-fi, free transport. Implementation is on…Water almost free, electric bill made reasonable, wi-fi free in some areas, free transport only for the fair sex. Their implementation is slow and partial.

Whether it is the manifesto of BJP or Congress or Shiv Sena or Trinamul or CPI or AAP or NPP or NPF–if the promises are not fulfilled, your manifestos remain mere slogans or preachings. People really want work at the ground level.

My better half bluntly tells me "every Saturday you waste 3 hours before the computer and write bakwas for a newspaper; nobody reads your column and nobody takes you seriously. Only your brothers read it to show their sympathies.

Instead of wasting time, you better clean the floor and dust the furniture or do some constructive work for the family and children". Sometimes I think she is right. But addiction is such an evil, you can't simply come out of it so quickly.

Children are irritated. In this age of AI , OTT, Pegasus, Supercomputer and nano technology we are still talking about land, people, Nationalism, Constitution, sovereignty, religion , culture etc. The latest generation does not believe in boundaries, religion and Nationalities, they think BTS is theirs, Pizza is universal, momo is global, KFC is international, internet is their birthright, google is guru, bitcoins are real money, Apple is a tool. Mobile phones are their soul.

Forget about free-trade with ASEAN, proceed for a free trade with Myanmar (limited at Tamu -Moreh) get the approval from Delhi–our man is sitting there to do anything good for the State. I heard that he is fighting within the MEA for a bus service from Imphal to Mandalay and re-constitution of a boundary commission with Myanmar. So be it.

The key to come out with flying colors is-pledge for an unemployment allowance to the youths 25 to 35 years, till they do something for an earning. Funding should be from Excise revenue–open liquor policy, free trade – Moreh, revamped State lottery, sarkari tolls, tax from private coaching/tuition centres, levy on Government doctors doing private practice – NPA allowed. Fools will not understand but you will.

Promise for the adoption of an industrial policy like that of Telangana State–employment generation guaranteed;
declare an open liquor policy identical with Tamil Nadu- huge revenue guaranteed;
contemplate a Gujarat type employment model (contractual)- savings guaranteed;
project a tourism policy similar with Goa- jobs guaranteed;
announce an Organic farming policy like that of Sikkim- health guaranteed,
assure irrigation like Punjab- prosperity guaranteed,
digitization like Andhra Pradesh- smooth functioning guaranteed;
pledge for development of infrastructure like Ahmedabad or Bangalore or Hyderabad – development guaranteed;
and finally vow for the protection of culture, land and people of the State–majority support guaranteed.

BTS concerts will also help, you stupid.


* Free Thinker wrote this article for The Sangai Express
This article was webcasted on October 21 2021.



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