From 10-year prison sentence for 'love jihad' to freebies: A look at BJP's manifesto in UP!

Two days ahead of the commencement of the first phase of the assembly polls, the BJP has on Tuesday unveiled its election manifesto for Uttar Pradesh. It was released by Union Home Minister Amit Shah and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath in the presence of senior BJP leaders. As usual, the saffron party has received flak over some of the promises including a prison sentence for love jihad. 

The manifesto - Lok Kalyan Sankalp Patra was earlier scheduled to get unveiled on Sunday. However, it was deferred in light of the demise of legendary singer Lata Mangeshkar. After launching the manifesto on Tuesday, Amit Shah said, "BJP UP has given form to this Sankalp Patra. It is not just a ghoshna patra, it is the UP govt's resolution. The 2017 'Sankalp Patra' had 212 resolutions, of which 92 have been fulfilled. We do what we say." 

The manifesto has come up with more freebies for voters. The party has promised free electricity for irrigation for farmers and jobs or self-employment opportunities to at least one member of each family. The party has also promised two free LPG cylinders under the Ujjwala Yojana scheme, free public transport travel for women over 60, and free two-wheelers for female college students. 

The party has also brought up its propaganda of 'love jihad' - the right-wing conspiracy theory that Muslim men seduce Hindu women to convert them, and said that such men would be jailed for ten years and would be imposed a fine of Rs 1 lakh. The Central ruling party has also assured to increase the pension for widows to Rs 1,500 per month. The party has said that it would double the state's per capita income and attract up to Rs 10 lakh crore investment. 

Some of the other key promises include - providing two crore tablets and smartphones under Swami Vivekanand Yuva Shashaktikaran, strengthening wheat and paddy purchase at Minimum Support Price in the next five years, and General Bipin Rawat Defence Industrial Corridor in Bundelkhand to be completed in record time. Uttar Pradesh will go for a seven-phase assembly poll from February 10 and the votes will be counted on March 10.