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A mix of the old and the new with a dash of swadeshi sums up promises of the BJP for boosting the economy ahead of the Lok Sabha polls. Top on the agenda are rationalisation of taxes, stable tax laws to restore investor confidence, an ‘infrastructure revolution’ and a rights-based welfare regime in the health sector.
“The BJP will raise investment in the infrastructure sector by doubling the share of infra investment to GDP ratio,” BJP president Rajnath Singh promised in his speech, adding that BJP’s government will also try to tap “the active support from a large number of NRIs present in foreign countries” and take steps to develop the bond market in the country where different institutions and agencies will be able to garner resources for infrastructure sector.
The BJP seeks to extend UPA’s welfare schemes NREGA and Food Security Act to a ‘right to health’. The BJP president also promised to decongest supply bottlenecks by proposing a ‘kisan bazaar’ as an alternative to ‘organised retail’ to tackle inflation.
Rajnath also promised to bring back the ‘black money’ stashed abroad. However, the BJP dumped the taxation model being proposed by yoga guru Ramdev, but promised rationalisation of taxation with a suggestion of slashing of tax rates for the salaried class. The party president in his speech virtually promised to slash income tax rates for the middle class.
“The challenge for us is how to create assets, provide power, water and roads to the poor. These things will be possible when we have 9% or more annual economic growth,” party leader Arun Jaitley said. He underlined the need to enhance the contribution of manufacturing sector in the economy to about 25% to generate jobs.