People's Manifesto (WNTA) Newsletter--Bihar
Wada Na Todo Abhiyan carried out People's Manifesto process in sixteen parliamentary constituencies out of forty constituencies of Bihar. WNTA conducted over 350 meetings at different levels in the state to know the demands of the people. Our partners also met special groups such as farmers, Muslims, women, school going girls, students, unemployed youth, tribals and Dalits to formulate the list of demands from these groups.
The process had an impact on government's decision. A day after the media release of the demands collected from the people, the state government swung into action and assured making policies to meet those demands. In a People's Manifesto meeting, school going girls have demanded for sanitary napkins. The government accepted the demands and approved a budget of Rs 10 crore per annum for providing free sanitary napkins to girls in the state.
Similarly, students in Bihar had demanded for government subsidy on education load. The government has assured the students that their demands will be taken into consideration and the state machinery has started working on to decide on the ways to provide subsidy to students on education loan.
Farmers demanded for Land reforms in the state and asked for Batai Kanoon for the welfare of landless farmers. They also demanded that agriculture should be recognized as an industry. They also demanded to make Panchayat Raj Institutions powerful for better implementation government schemes. One of the major demands of the people was to reform the enlisting system of Above Poverty Line and Below Poverty Line lists as many complained that they could not access the government schemes because of improper system in enlisting of names in BPLlist.
Women demanded that there shall not be any age-limit on issuance of widow pension and the amount of pension should be increased from Rs. 300 to Rs. 1500. People living in Bhagalpur, Vaishali, Dharbanga, Muzzafarpur and Katihar complained of massive water logging. They demanded that the government shall make provision to utilize such land. Muslims demanded for fund allocation for Madarasas. WNTA and its partners are meeting political parties to push the demands of the poor and marginalized in the manifesto of political parties.