CWC Meet: Cong Demands Increase in Quotas, Announces 6 Guarantees for Telangana

The CWC also slammed the Modi government at the Centre for its "stubborn refusal to conduct a caste census."

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CWC Meet: Cong Demands Increase in Quotas, Announces 6 Guarantees for Telangana
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Congress leader Sonia Gandhi on Sunday, 17 September, announced six guarantees for poll-bound Telangana while addressing an election rally in the state. The guarantees include the Mahalakshmi Scheme, which involves Rs 2,500 financial assistance to women per month; gas cylinders at Rs 500; and free travel for women in state-run buses.

Transcript of Sonia Gandhi's speech. 

(Photo: Accessed by The Quint)

The Congress Working Committee (CWC), on Day 1 of its two-day meeting in Hyderabad on Saturday, 16 September, had also called for an increase in the upper limit of reservations for Scheduled Caste (SC), Scheduled Tribe (ST), and Other Backward Classes (OBC) communities in the country.

The CWC also slammed the Narendra Modi government at the Centre for its "stubborn refusal to conduct a caste census," and alleged that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) lacked commitment to the social and economic justice of marginalised communities.

In a list of 14 resolutions taken at the meeting, the CWC also addressed the issues of farmers, the Manipur crisis, and the 'One Nation, One Election' proposal, among others.

The meeting was attended by leaders including former Congress presidents Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, Rajasthan Chief Minister (CM) Ashok Gehlot, Chhattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghel, Himachal Pradesh CM Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu, Karnataka CM Siddaramaiah, and party general secretaries KC Venugopal and Jairam Ramesh.

'Impose President's Rule in Manipur'

Expressing anguish over the "total breakdown of constitutional machinery in Manipur" in light of the ongoing violence, the CWC stated:

"The sparks from Manipur are now threatening to spread to the wider North-Eastern region. The CWC reiterates the demand of the Congress party for the immediate removal of the Chief Minister and imposition of President's Rule. The CWC also urges that all possible steps be taken to recover looted arms and ammunition, restore public order, alleviate the humanitarian crisis affecting thousands of besieged people and internal refugees..."

The committee alleged that the BJP government's "failure" to support the country's farmers with the Minimum Support Price was driving them into "deep distress."

"The economic outlook remains bleak. The sole concern of the government seems to be headline management," the CWC alleged in its statement.

Expressing "grave concern" over rising prices of commodities, it said:

"The failure to conduct the decennial Census, due in 2021, is a national and an international shame. One of the consequences is that an estimated 14 crore of the poorest Indians are denied their entitlement to food rations since ration cards are issued on the basis of the 2011 Census."

Simultaneous Polls a 'Brazen Attack' on Federalism: CWC

"The 'One Nation, One Election' proposal is yet another brazen attack on the federal structure of the country. The Modi government has systematically undermined federalism through overriding legislation, reduction in the States' share of tax revenues, and the misuse of the office of Governor," the CWC alleged.

It further claimed that the Centre was creating "roadblocks in implementing schemes and programmes in Opposition-governed states ... and denying emergency funds and disaster relief to states."

It added that "parliamentary debate and scrutiny have all but disappeared and far-reaching legislation is hurriedly pushed through without proper scrutiny and discussion."

"The Chief Election Commissioner and Other Election Commissioners (Appointment) Bill introduced in Parliament will severely compromise the independence of the Election Commission to conduct free and fair elections," the CWC alleged.

The CWC concluded its meeting by expressing confidence that the Congress will win decisive mandates in the upcoming Assembly elections in Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Mizoram, Rajasthan and Telangana.

Further, it reaffirmed its preparedness for the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections, which are due in April-May 2024.

"The Congress Party is fully ready for the battle ahead. It is confident that the people of our country are wanting change. We will fulfill their expectations of law and order, freedom, social and economic justice, equality and equity," the CWC said.

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Topics:  Congress   CWC   CWC Meeting 

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