Inequality of income and opportunity remains India’s ugliest truth. It is the moral and political responsibility of any government to ensure that every Indian family is assured of a basic income every month.

  1. Congress resolves to launch a Mahalakshmi scheme to provide ₹ 1 lakh per year to every poor Indian family as an unconditional cash transfer. The poor will be identified among the families in the bottom of the income pyramid.
  2. The amount will be directly transferred to the bank account of the oldest woman of the household. Absent a woman, it will be transferred to the account of the oldest member of the family.
  3. The scheme will be rolled out in stages and reviewed every year to assess the number of beneficiary families and its impact on alleviating poverty.


Historically, women have been discriminated against and put at great disadvantage. Congress pledges to remove the discrimination against women and uphold and advance the rights of women.

Religious Minority
  1. The Constitution (106th) Amendment Act marks the BJP’s great betrayal of women. The Amendment Act contains sinister provisions that will allow the reservation of seats in the Lok Sabha and State Assemblies to come into operation only beyond 2029. Congress will delete the sinister provisions and bring the Amendment Act into force immediately. The one-third reservation for women will be applied to State Assemblies that will be elected in the next round of Assembly elections in 2025. The one-third reservation for women will also be applied to the Lok Sabha that will be elected in 2029.
  2. We will reserve one-half (50 per cent) of central government jobs for women starting in 2025.
  3. We will ensure that more women are appointed to high positions such as judges, secretaries to government, high ranking police officers, law officers and directors on the boards of listed companies.
  4. All laws will be scrutinised for gender discrimination and gender bias. The offending provisions will be removed or amended in the first year of the Congress government.
  5. We will ensure that the principle of ‘Same Work, Same Wages’ is enforced in order to prevent discrimination in wages for women.
  6. The contribution of the Central government to the pay of frontline health workers (such as ASHA, Anganwadi, Mid-Day Meal cooks, etc.) will be doubled.
  7. We will substantially increase the amount of institutional credit that is extended to women. In particular, we will vastly enhance the credit extended to Self Help Groups by banks, Non-Banking Financial Companies and Micro Finance Institutions.
  8. The Labour Force Participation Rate of women is an abysmal 25 per cent. We will embark on a massive exercise to expand women’s participation in the workforce through measures such as fair and equal wages; safe places of work; childcare services; preventing sexual harassment and violence; and extending maternity benefits.
  9. We will re-incorporate the Bhartiya Mahila Bank (Women’s Bank) that had made a promising start under an all-Women Board of Directors but was wound up by the patriarchal BJP/NDA government.
  10. In matters of marriage, succession, inheritance, adoption, guardianship, etc., women and men should have equal rights. We will review all the laws and ensure equality between men and women.
  11. We will ensure that laws intended to prevent offences against women such as the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 and the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 are strictly enforced.
  12. The government will fund state governments to build sufficient night shelters for migrant women workers and adequate number of safe and hygienic public toilets for women will be provided in towns and cities. Free napkin vending machines will be installed in public spaces, schools and colleges.
  13. In partnership with the State governments, the Central Government will double the number of working women hostels in the country, with at least one Savitribai Phule Hostel in each district.
  14. We will appoint an Adhikar Maitri in every Panchayats to serve as a paralegal to educate women and assist them in the enforcement of their legal rights.