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GDP growth is not the true indicator people's well being: Gujarat activists release manifesto

By Our Representative
Fifty-odd Gujarat-based academics and social activists, many of them well-known Sarvodayists who had played a major role in the fight against Indira Gandhi-imposed Emergency, have released a people's manifesto at a gathering in Gujarat Vidypeeth, the university founded by Mahatma Gandhi, declaring that even seven decades after India became independence, people haven't tasted freedom in true sense.
Prepared under the directions of top academics Prof Ghanshyam Shah and Prof Rohit Shukla, and veteran social activists Prakash N Shah and Indukumar Jani, the manifesto, running into 72 pages of incisive analysis on issues that directly affect the marginalised sections of society, including education, health, environment, Dalits, tribals, minorities, farmers, working classes, women and children, the manifesto insists, GDP growth is not the true indicator people's well being.
Pointing towards rise in inequalities, the manifesto wants those who will take over reins of power after the ensuing general elections to work for social justice and not wait for a mass uprising. It regrets, lately the government has been increasingly privatising all aspects of governance, making them out of reach of the common people.
Seeking investigation into stupendous rise in the income of elected representatives, the manifesto seeks complete transparency in the use of funds by political parties, the manifesto wants those in power not to resort to political propaganda using public funds ahead of elections.
Seeking a series of reforms -- judicial electoral, media, health system, educational, agricultural, police and banking -- the manifesto regrets lack of freedom of expression, use of law and order machinery for political ends, insisting, the authorities should stop harassing and intimidating activists, writers, and artists.
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Click HERE to download the manifesto

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