Cong implementing manifesto despite hurdles

Mumbai: Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan on Saturday said the Congress, in the state and at the Centre, is striving hard to implement its election manifesto despite compulsions of coalition politics.

"Coalition governments have their own limitations.

Congress, in the state and at Centre, is pursuing implementation of its electoral promises despite all hurdles," Chavan said at a meeting of the state unit Seva Dal programme while paying tribute to former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi on his 20th death anniversary here.

Without naming the Left parties, Chavan said the defeat of an "irrelevant" ideology in West Bengal and Kerala, has proved that people of the country wanted a change.

"The middle path of Congress party which stands for all inclusive development can alone take the country on the path of becoming a super power," he said.

Attributing achievements like RTI, NREGS, Right to Education to Congress, Chavan said it was late Rajiv Gandhi who brought him into active politics. "He included me in his team of people like Chidambaram, Salman Kursheed, Rajesh Pilot, P R Kumar Mangalam to work on his dream of `India as a super power of the 21st century`. Rajiv liked my research on computerisation of regional languages," he said.

Remembering the late Congress leader, he said: "It was Rajiv who persuaded me to contest the 1991 Lok Sabha elections from Karad after my mother Premla decided to retire. However, my dream of Rajiv seeing me in Lok Sabha could not be fulfilled. It is due to his inspiration that I worked in different capacities in politics and reached the position where I am today," he said.

Apart from unleashing telecom and economic reforms, Rajiv`s biggest achievement as prime minister was decentralisation of decision-making and empowerment of youth and women, he said.