Congress president Rahul Gandhi has promised to give Rs 72,000 per annum to 20 per cent of India's poorest families if Congress comes to power in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. The scheme will benefit 5 crore families and 25 crore individuals directly, according to Gandhi. "After doing all the calculations several times, we have found that this scheme is fiscally possible," Gandhi said while addressing a press conference today. Gandhi said that the Congress would implement the scheme in a phased manner and it would benefit 5 crore families and 25 crore individuals. Gandhi did not go into the details, but claimed the scheme was possible to execute. Gandhi confidently said Congress would remove poverty from the country with the new scheme if it came to power.
BusinessToday.In analysis of Rahul Gandhi's announcement:
- Allotting Rs 72,000 per annum to 5 crore families would translate into a burden of Rs 3.60 lakh crore on the exchequer and amounts to around 13 per cent of the Rs 27,84,200 crore budgeted expenditure for 2019-20.
- This figure of Rs 3.60 lakh crore is slightly more than the entire corpus of funds Narendra Modi has set aside for centrally sponsored schemes in 2019-20. The Narendra Modi government has laid down budgetary allocation of Rs 3. 27 lakh crore for the Centre-sponsored programmes during the next fiscal.
- It will be about 2 per cent of the total GDP of India. This means that either India will have to go back on its fiscal discipline path, or find resources by curtailing other welfare measures.
Rahul Gandhi said that the Congress has studied the financial implications of the scheme and has consulted renowned economists and experts before finalising the scheme.
Earlier today, the Congress Working Committee met to finalise the manifesto for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. The manifesto is being framed by a committee headed by P Chidambaram.
Follow BusinessToday.In live blog for more updates about the scheme:
07:45pm: FM Arun Jaitley says, referring to the Congress party, "You have misled the country on issue of poverty for 50 years. Even after giving that slogan (garibi hatao) if today you think that 20% people don't even have an income of Rs 12,000, then the cross hangs on your neck for letting down poor of the country."
07:44pm: "The latest announcement of the Congress party if tested on simple arithmetic then Rs 72,000 is less than 2/3rd of the existing DBT under Modi government, which averages Rs 1.068 lakh annually. So what is being claimed by the Congress party - a bluff announcement," said FM Jaitley.
07:43pm: Arun Jaitley: Today most industrial workers get more than Rs 12,000/ month. The minimum starting salary in govt after the 7th CPC is Rs 18,000 a month. The landless and poor, amongst the villagers, get a MNREGA payment. Minimum wages for the labour have been raised by 42%.
07:35pm: FM Jaitley says: Nehruvian model stagnated growth. Indira Gandhi gave legendary slogan of 'Garibi Hatao' in 1971 & just redistributed poverty. The legacy of poverty in India reflects inefficient governance & economic model of the Congress Party.
Nehruvian model stagnated growth. Indira Gandhi gave legendary slogan of 'Garibi Hatao' in 1971 & just redistributed poverty. The legacy of poverty in India reflects inefficient governance & economic model of the Congress Party.- Chowkidar Arun Jaitley (@arunjaitley) March 25, 2019
07:30pm: "Indira ji won election in 1971 on 'gareebi hatao' but she didn't take the necessary steps to remove poverty. She did not believe in increased productivity, she did not believe in generation of wealth, she only believed in redistribution of poverty," said Finance Minister Arun Jaitley.
06:00pm: Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) slams Rahul Gandhi for his Rs 72,000 promise. "It is deeply regretted that Mr Gandhi forgot to announce the source of such a whopping fund and it makes us to believe that this burden will fall on tax payers, if his party comes to power. It is a declaration which has been made without applying any mind just for greed of votes. It's ironic that loan waiver, other freebies burden always falls on the section that pays tax and gets nothing in return. It has become a fashion to impose all burden on tax payers for fulfilling unrealistic declarations. Mr Gandhi has become an expert in making high but lofty declarations," said CAIT Secretary General Praveen Khandelwal.
05:20pm: "Congress gave CM seat to us even when we won 37 seats. With support of Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi we formed government here. I'll campaign everywhere in state. I'll also go to Andhra, Chandrababu Naidu also invited me. We're secular parties, wherever required I'll go," says HD Deve Gowda.
05:05pm: "The work that PM Modi has done for women empowerment and his thoughts towards women, is evident. He has put women in leading portfolios, he has also worked extensively for the 'divyangs'," said Paralympian Deepa Malik.
05:00pm: "Rahul Gandhi suggested us to give Tumkur to JD(S), after joint discussions. We obeyed the decision. We didn't expect that Deve Gowda ji would decide to contest from here, so it's a great news for us. I assure people of Tumkur will make sure he wins," says Karnataka Deputy CM G Parameshwara.
04:55pm: Kamal Haasan said that the meeting with West Bengal CM was 'excellent'.
Kamal Haasan, Makkal Needhi Maiam after meeting West Bengal CM: Meeting was excellent we are proud to say that Makkal Needhi Maiam is an ally of TMC in Andaman. We hope this relation evolves in future. I'm going to campaign for their candidate (in Andaman). pic.twitter.com/gaZSj3TLQZ- ANI (@ANI) March 25, 2019
04:50pm: Former Union Minister Sukh Ram and his grandson Aashray Sharma join Congress. They had also met party President Rahul Gandhi earlier today.
04:45pm: Odisha Chief Minister and BJD Chief Naveen Patnaik files nomination for the Bijepur assembly constituency at the Padampur Sub Collector office in Bargarh. He had earlier filed his nomination for the Hinjili assembly constituency: ANI.
04:35pm: Makkal Needhi Maiam chief Kamal Haasan meets Chief Minister and TMC chief Mamata Banerjee at Nabanna in Howrah: ANI.
04:27 pm: A delegation of Conrgress leaders including Randeep Singh Surjewala, Kapil Sibal, and Abhishek Manu Singhvi will approach the Election Commission today over the biopic of PM Narendra Modi.
04:20 pm: Paralympian Deepa Malik and INLD MLA Kehar Singh Rawat join Bharatiya Janata Party.
Delhi: Paralympian Deepa Malik and INLD MLA Kehar Singh Rawat joins Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). pic.twitter.com/H9iqxtQGfC— ANI (@ANI) March 25, 2019
04:08 pm: Nationalist Congress Party has released its manifesto for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
03:57 pm: Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, Minister of State for Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, expressed his reservations about Congress' Minimum Income Guarantee Scheme in a tweet. "Very sad to see the President of the Grand Old Party reducing himself to a pack of lies," Rathore posted on Twitter.
Very sad to see the President of the Grand Old Party reducing himself to a pack of lies.— Chowkidar Rajyavardhan Rathore (@Ra_THORe) March 25, 2019
Rahul Gandhi: a compulsive liar, our very own Pied Piper of Hamelin. https://t.co/nPJKqDuILG
03:19 pm: Alloting Rs 72,000 per annum to 5 crore families will put a burden of Rs 3.6 lakh crore on the state exchequer.
03:10 pm: The scheme will be implemented in a phased manne, Gandhi said.
03:05 pm: This amount will be credited directly to the bank accounts of the beneficiaries.
03:00 pm: "It is an extremely powerful, ground-breaking and well-thought through idea. We have consulted many economists on the scheme," he said.
02:50 pm: The monthly basic income has been pegged at Rs 12,000, Gandhi said.
02:45 pm: Rahul Gandhi said that the Rs 72,000 will be given every year to 20 per cent of the poorest families in India.
02:47 pm: After the CWC meet today, Congress president Rahul Gandhi announced the details of the minimum basic guarantee scheme.