Saturday, April 3, 2010
Food Security Bill- UPA's flagship of social sector
With taking charge as Chairperson of National Advisory Council for the second time, Congress President Sonia Gandhi began her initiation to get Food Security Bill passed by the Cabinet and then by Parliament to fulfil her promise made in the Congress led UPA manifesto in the General elections. As she as the Chairperson of NAC during the tenure of UPA 1 landmark scheme of National Rural Employment Scheme get passed and implemented which proved to the flagship of UPA in social sector area, this time she is committed to get the Food Security Bill Bill passed and implemented in its original form and shape to give guarantee to the poorest of the poor of food at the nominal price available. The sincerity of Sonia Gandhi to UPA become the face of Aam Admi is unquestionable. She always goads the Manmohan Singh -led UPA government to pay maximum attention towards social sector. The Right to Education for as every child as fundamental right has been enforced a few days ago just after the announcement of her being reinstated as Chairperson of NAC amply reflects that Sonia Gandhi's vital contribution to the landmark achievement of the UPA government in the field of social sector. NAC comprises distinguished professionals drawn from diverse fields of development activity such as Aruna Roy, Jean Dreze, C.H. Hanumantha Rao and N.C. Saxena. Through the NAC, the government had access to their expertise and to a larger network of research organisations, NGOs and social action and advocacy groups. Sonia Gandhi's special characteristics is that as the supremo of Congress party, she works rising above the vested political interest to reach the benefits provided by the government to the poor and needy. That is why she single handedly brought Congress-led UPA government to power for two consecutive terms without aspiring for any post in the government. It made recommendations to the Centre and provided feedback on the impact of action initiated in various sectors.The NAC had played a notable role in the enactment of the Right to Information Act, the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS) and the Rs 70,000-crore loan waiver scheme for farmers. In its new avatar, it is poised for a bigger role because Mrs Gandhi is said to be keen on monitoring the Congress’ big ticket programmes like the Food Security Bill, the Right to Education Act, the NREGS expansion and major schemes on health and water. The BJP’s charge that Mrs Gandhi’s position in the NAC had undermined the Prime Minister’s authority may seem exaggerated. However, one cannot rule out the possibility of growing tension between the party and the government which needs to be avoided.