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Congress poll manifesto for Karnataka vows 1 crore jobs

 
Rahul Gandhi releases Congress' poll manifesto for Karnataka
 
 
The Congress, which is seeking to retain power in Karnataka, on Friday promised to create one crore jobs across the southern state during its five-year term.
 
"We aim to create at least 15-20 lakh jobs each year in the state and provide programmes for skill development, encouraging entrepreneurship and increasing youths' employability quotient," said the manifesto for the May 12 assembly elections released by party President Rahul Gandhi in this port city.
 
Terming its 47-page manifesto a "people's manifesto", the party said it wants to create a hut-free Karnataka and would build 50 lakh houses in the state's rural parts - at the rate of 10 lakh per year.
 
The Congress also said that it was committed to address the urban housing challenge and proposed to build 15 lakh houses (3 lakh houses per year).
 
Claiming to the first state in the country to roll out the "Arogya Karnataka" universal healthcare scheme, the party said it will increase the budget allocation for health from the current 0.9 per cent to at least 1.5 per cent.
 
On March 2, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah had unveiled the state's public healthcare scheme, that is expected to benefit about 1.43 crore households, by providing free treatment to all below poverty line (BPL) families at government hospitals.
 
The party also promised to provide free education to all students from grades 1 to 12 across all the state-run schools in the state. Presently, the state gives free elementary education to all children from class 1 to 8 in state-run and government-aided schools.
 
In a bid to promote girl child education, Siddaramaiah had, while presenting the state Budget for this fiscal, announced that all girls will get free education up to post-graduation in state-run institutions.
 
All college-going students in the state will receive a smartphone, the manifesto added.
 
Information Technology (IT) will be made an important driver of the state economy by increasing the field's contribution from the current $60 billion to $300 billion, the ruling party said.
 
Currently, the state capital Bengaluru alone, which is home to over 750 multinationals and 2,000 IT firms, contributes about 40 per cent of the total IT exports done by the country.
 
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"We will build a talent pool to cater to over 3 million IT jobs in the state by skill upgradation and IT-driven curriculum," added the manifesto.
 
The party will also develop the state into a technology driven sustainable progressive society and make it the Global Innovation Hub for all sectors of the state's economy, and the innovation capital of the world.
 
Noting that the manifesto represented the voice and aspirations of the state's people, the party said that through it, the Congress reaffirmed its commitment to respecting, defending and protecting the state's pluralism.
 
With 10 different agro-climatic zones, as the state offers opportunities for higher growth in agriculture and allied sectors, the party will launch an initiative for developing sustainable agri-business through an Agricultural Corridor covering production, infrastructure and industrial segments on an end to end concept.
 
The party has promised to expedite the Chennai-Bangalore-Chitradurga Industrial Corridor (CBCIC) and Bangalore-Mumbai Economic Corridor (BMEC) expedited on the lines of Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC) with the support of the Central government.
 
"Regional connectivity with roads will be enhanced to ensure first and last mile connectivity to all villages and robust airport and airstrip infrastructure developed in the state," the manifesto also said.
 
IANS
 
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