Bold Commitments: Highlights of Congress’ ‘Nyay Patra’ Manifesto

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The Congress party has released its manifesto for the 2024 Lok Sabha elections, prioritizing job creation, infrastructure development, and a national caste census. Released in New Delhi by party leader Mallikarjun Kharge, the manifesto emphasizes ‘work’, ‘wealth’, and ‘welfare’ as its overarching themes. It promises a nationwide caste census to identify socio-economic conditions, along with a pledge to raise the quota cap for marginalized groups and ensure minimum support price (MSP) for farmers.

Key Promises from Congress Manifesto ‘Nyay Patra’:

  • Launch of the Mahalakshmi scheme, offering ₹1 lakh per year as unconditional cash transfer to every poor Indian family identified among those at the bottom of the income pyramid.


  • Guarantee of a national minimum wage set at ₹400 per day.


  • Commitment to filling nearly 30 lakh vacancies in sanctioned posts across various levels in the central government.


  • Adoption of the Rajasthan model for cashless insurance, providing coverage of up to ₹25 lakh for universal healthcare.
  • Ensuring freedom of choice for minorities in matters of dress, food, language, and personal laws, with encouragement for reforms in personal laws through community participation.
  • Legal assurances for MSP announced annually by the government, following recommendations from the Swaminathan Commission.
  • Conducting a nationwide socio-economic and caste Census to enumerate castes and sub-castes, along with raising the 50 per cent cap on reservations for SC, ST, and OBC through constitutional amendment.
  • Recognition of civil unions among LGBTQIA+ couples through legislation after wide consultation.


  • Commitment to rapid growth and wealth generation, with a target of doubling the GDP in the next 10 years.


  • Replacement of GST laws enacted by the BJP/NDA government with GST 2.0, based on the principle of a single, moderate rate to alleviate burdens on the poor.


  • Commitment to repairing relations with the Maldives and restoring the status quo ante on the borders with China, ensuring accessibility to areas previously patrolled by both armies. Adjustments to policy towards China will be made until this is achieved.



  • Elimination of application fees for government examinations and posts, alongside a one-time relief measure of writing off all student educational loans, including unpaid interest as of March 15, 2024, with compensation to banks by the government.
  • Increase in the central government’s contribution to pensions under the National Social Assistance Programme from ₹200-₹500 per month to ₹1,000 per month.


  • Reservation of 50 per cent of central government jobs for women starting in 2025.



  • Amendment of election laws to combine the efficiency of electronic voting machines (EVMs) with the transparency of ballot papers, allowing voters to deposit machine-generated voting slips into the voter-verifiable paper audit trail (VVPAT) unit.


  • Promise not to interfere with personal choices regarding food, dress, love, marriage, travel, and residence, with plans to amend the Tenth Schedule of the Constitution to make defection an automatic disqualification of membership in the Assembly or Parliament.



  • Introduction of separate legislation for the registration of sports federations/bodies/associations, ensuring compliance with the Olympic Charter, autonomy, and accountability, along with provision of sports scholarships of ₹10,000 per month to talented sports persons below 21.
  • Amendment of the Press Council of India Act, 1978, to empower the Council to tackle the issues of fake news and paid news

Highlighting the party’s commitment to addressing poverty, the manifesto aims to uplift 23 crore people over the next decade, with a focus on empowering women through the ‘Mahalakshmi’ scheme. This initiative pledges an unconditional cash transfer to the oldest female member of poor families. Additionally, the Congress vows to tackle income and opportunity inequality, advocating for universal free healthcare and Assisted Living and Care Centres for disabled individuals.

On national security, the Congress stresses the importance of prudent border management and defense preparedness, aiming to restore the status quo on the China-India border and mend diplomatic relations with Maldives. The manifesto also includes provisions for LGBTQIA+ rights, proposing recognition of civil unions, and suggests reforms to ensure both efficiency and transparency in the voting process.

The Congress manifesto seeks to alleviate the burden on unemployed youth by proposing a one-time relief measure to write off all student educational loans, compensating banks through government funds. It also pledges to combine the efficiency of electronic voting machines (EVMs) with the transparency of ballot papers, allowing voters to deposit machine-generated voting slips into the voter-verifiable paper audit trail (VVPAT) unit.

Throughout the document, the Congress positions itself as a champion of social justice and inclusive growth, contrasting its approach with what it perceives as the BJP’s favoritism towards the wealthy. By focusing on issues such as poverty alleviation, farmer welfare, healthcare accessibility, and minority rights, the party aims to appeal to a broad spectrum of voters.

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