Sikkim | HSP manifesto promises universal basic income & jobs

Sikkim | HSP manifesto promises universal basic income & jobs

GANGTOK | April 4, 2019:

The Hamro Sikkim Party (HSP), of former footballer Bhaichung Bhutia on Wednesday said if would launch an universal basic income and would provide jobs to all qualified and unemployed people in Sikkim if voted to power in the coming Assembly election.

The HDF manifesto which was released on Wednesday called upon the people of Sikkim to discard the old and cliched caste-communal-crony politics of existing ruling and opposition political parties in the state Assembly, who are nothing but two sides of the same coin.

Explaining salient features of his party's manifesto, Bhutia said his party will launch an Universal Basic Income in Sikkim, called Sikkim Samman Yojana, under which a family of five persons will be given an annual guaranteed income of Rs 90,000.

The scheme will be implemented within 25 days of his party coming to power, he said at a press conference.

Bhutia, who is the working president of HSP, said unemployment was a serious issue in Sikkim with the unemployment rate at 11.9 per cent in January 2019 and said that his party will provide jobs to all qualified and unemployed people within six months of coming to power.

Those in temporary jobs be be regularised in service, he said, adding an employment commission will be formed to look after all employment generation related matters.

The HSP leader said that the elderly people too will be taken care of by his government which will launch a Sikkim Universal Pension Scheme under which a Sikkimese, aged between 59 and 70 years, will get an yearly pension of Rs 42,000 and those above 70 years, will be given Rs 1,02,000 per annum.

For farmers, Bhutia said that his party will give a one-time loan waiver to them, besides set up a farmers' commission to take care of various issues related to well being of the farming community.

Seeking to woo the indigenous people, the HSP leader said that no stone will be left unturned to safeguard protections under Article 371F of the Constitution.

He said that an Independent Environment Commission to be set up within six months to lays down environment standards, regulations and ensure their compliance for protection of ecology and environment on long-term basis. Battle against climate change will be given a top priority, he said.

Bhutia said that a comprehensive anti-discrimination law and an an Equal Opportunity Commission to be set up up within 12 months to prevent discrimination against all vulnerable groups and a statutory backing will be created for tribal sub-plan and special component plan.

The HSP shall facilitate the women's empowerment and ensure their participation in public life and politics through legislation by amending laws to provide a reservation of one-third seats in the state legislative assembly and panchayats and also provide one-third reservation in judiciary and police.

Elections to the 32-member Sikkim Assembly and the lone Lok Sabha seat in the state will be held on April 11.

(PTI)

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