Congress wants to “bring back the original idea of India, an inclusive liberal Republic”

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In an interview to discuss in some detail the 2024 manifesto of the Congress Party, a key member of the Congress Manifesto Committee which drafted the document, Praveen Chakravarty, says: “The central vision of the manifesto is to bring back the original idea of India, an inclusive liberal Republic with respect for institutions and the rule of law.”

In a 50-minute interview to Karan Thapar for The Wire, Praveen Chakravarty, who is also the Chairman of the All India Professionals’ Congress, responded to Narendra Modi’s claim the Congress manifesto carries the stamp of the Muslim League and that every page reeks of breaking India. “Prime Minister Modi cannot see anything beyond Hindu-Muslim”. Mr. Chakravarty said the Congress manifesto comprises 48 pages, covering 31 topics and 145 specific promises. “The word Muslim is not there at all in the manifesto and the word minorities occurs 11 times. What is Muslim about the Right to Apprenticeship? What is Muslim about doubling economic output? What is Muslim about giving farmers a legal guarantee for MSP? What is Muslim about saying we will take back our land from China? … this is the manifesto for India, every single Indian, to restore our original idea of India.”

I do not want to steal Mr. Chakravarty’s thunder or run the risk of paraphrasing him or précising him wrongly. So I think it’s better you should watch this interview for yourself. Often, on specific issues, there’s clear disagreement and, again, I do not want to misrepresent that. It happens over the fact that so many of Congress’s manifesto promises are not costed, it happens during discussions about some of the manifestos agricultural promises, it happens over promises to do with the functioning of Parliament or on CAA as well as the proposed National Judicial Commission, China and the Chief of Defence Staff position. I think all of this should be seen by you rather than convey it through a precis by me.

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