BJP committed to 33 pc quota for women: Venkaiah

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Bangalore, Jan 30: The Bharatiya Janata Party is committed to provide 33 per cent reservations to woman in Parliament and Legislative Assemblies, senior BJP leader Venkaiah Naidu said today.

A path breaking resolution to this effect was adopted at the party's National Executive and Council held in New Delhi last week, he told mediapersons here. The resolution was a landmark in Indian politics and it would prove to be a 'path finder' for other parties. ''It is a radical shift towards gender equality,'' he said.

Another resolution mooted was writing off farm loans up to Rs 50,000 and issuing of fresh loans the farmers at four per cent interest if the BJP came to power at the Centre. It was also decided to take up migration of farmers' loans taken from private banks and lenders to public sector financial institutions, he said.

According to a government study, only 32 per cent of loans availed by farmers were from financial institutions, while majority of 68 per cent loans were taken from private lenders at high rate of interest. Fiftyfive per cent of farmers were debt-ridden, the study noted.

In another resolution, the party had promised to amend the Land Acquisition Act of 1984 to the effect that government should not acquire any fertile land and even if it was acquired for any special purpose, the farmers should be made party and the transaction should be transparent, he added.

Mr Naidu said the National Executive also promised the people that the party would increase the Income Tax limit to Rs 1.5 lakh and bring down interest on Housing loans. He said the Congress would meet its 'Waterloo' in the next Parliamentary elections due to its failure on all fronts, including check to control prices of essential commodities, terrorist activities and anti-farmer policies.

The Executive had decided to strengthen NDA in various states and launch election campaign immediately. Booth level workers meeting would be held within three months, he informed.

Mr L K Advani, who will be the Prime Ministerial candidate, would undertake a whirlwind tour across the country from February six, starting from Jabalpur in Madhya Pradesh to strengthen the party, right from grassroot level and prepare it for the elections, he said.

Replying to a question about the threat on life to BJP leaders, he said, ''We are politicians and leaders cannot be sitting in a security room. It was the duty of the Government to provide protection to the leaders.'' To another question on former Karnataka Home Minister and JD(S) rebel leader M P Prakash decision to join the Congress instead of BJP, Mr Naidu said Congress had tried to attract opposition leaders in its fold in Gujarat and was defeated in the elections. In Karnataka also, the Congress would met the same fate.

UNI

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