From national security to Article 370, here's what BJP manifesto promises

Prime Minister Narendra Modi with BJP President Amit Shah and Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh releasing the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) Manifesto for Lok Sabha Elections 2019 (PHOTO-DALIP KUMAR)
The decisive leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi has fundamentally altered the national security paradigm of India in the last five years. Looking ahead, we propose to do the following:

Zero-tolerance approach to terrorism

Our security doctrine will be guided by our national security interest only. This is exemplified by the surgical strikes and the air strikes carried out recently. We will firmly continue our policy of ‘Zero Tolerance’ against terrorism and extremism and continue to follow our policy of giving a free hand to our security forces in combating terrorism.

National security

Strengthening our Armed Forces — We will speed up the purchases of outstanding defence related equipments and weapons. In order to equip the Armed Forces with modern equipment, we will continue to take focused steps to strengthen the strike capability of the Armed Forces.

Self-reliance in defence sector — In order to ensure self-reliance in procurement of defence equipment, we have taken several effective steps in the last five years. For instance, the most modern AK-203 automatic rifles are being manufactured at Amethi under our “Make in India in Defence” initiative. We are commited to focus on “Make in India in Defence” to enable indigenous production of defence equipment. This will also generate employment and encourage investment in the defence sector.

Welfare of soldiers

We have already demonstrated our commitment to the welfare of our veterans with the implementation of long delayed OROP. To take this commitment forward, we promise to create a more effective framework for the resettlement of our Armed Forces veterans. 

Modernisation of police forces

We will continue to take forward the process of modernising the Central Armed Police Forces to further increase their capacity and readiness and enable them to effectively combat internal security challenges.

We will provide assistance to the states to upgrade their police forces through the “Scheme for Modernisation of Police Forces”. We will encourage expedited police reforms in the states and help state police forces to be more sensitive to the citizens.

Combating infiltration

There has been a huge change in the cultural and linguistic identity of some areas due to illegal immigration, resulting in an adverse impact on local people’s livelihood and employment. We will expeditiously complete the National Register of Citizens process in these areas on priority. In future we will implement the NRC in a phased manner in other parts of the country.

We will continue to undertake effective steps to prevent illegal immigration in the Northeastern states. For this, we will further strengthen our border security. 

Reinforcing border security

We will focus on creation of developmental and other necessary infrastructure in border areas to ensure that border security is strengthened, and to enable increased participation of and benefits for border areas in the country’s development and progress.

We have completed building six integrated check-posts with another under construction to facilitate easier trade and travel from the neighboring countries. We will further ease the movement of goods and people by constructing 14 more integrated check-posts by 2024. 

Coastal safety

Effectively strengthening coastal security through implementation of a coastal security scheme to provide modern equipment and allocating funds to the states for establishing coastal police stations, establishment of National Committee for Strengthening Maritime & Coastal Security, Island Information System and National Academy of Coastal Policing.

Citizenship Amendment Bill

We are committed to the enactment of the Citizenship Amendment Bill for the protection of individuals of religious minority communities from neighbouring countries escaping persecution. We will make all efforts to clarify the issues to the sections of population from the Northeastern states who have expressed apprehensions regarding the legislation. 

Combating left-wing extremism

We have already taken strong actions to reduce left wing extremism to a very large extent and limited them to small pockets. In the last five years, we have focussed on the development of economic and social infrastructure such as roads, mobile towers, schools and medical facilities in the tribal areas affected by left wing extremism.

Jammu & Kashmir- Article 370

In the last five years, we have made all necessary efforts to ensure peace in Jammu and Kashmir through decisive actions and firm policy. 

We reiterate our position since the time of the Jan Sangh to the abrogation of Article 370. We are committed to annulling Article 35A of the Constitution of India as the provision is discriminatory against non-permanent residents and women of Jammu and Kashmir. 
Edited excerpts from the manifesto of the Bharatiya Janata Party  released in Delhi, April 8

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