DNT pledges change

Business Bhutan - - Money - Peky Sa­mal from Thim­phu HEALTH ECON­OMY WA­TER CUL­TURE JOBS SONAM GONGPHEL CON­NEC­TIV­ITY CIVIL SER­VANTS ED­U­CA­TION ROADS WOMEN & CHIL­DREN EF­FI­CIENT SER­VICES HOUS­ING

Druk Nyam­rup Tshogpa (DNT) of­fers near to rad­i­cal changes in ar­eas such as econ­omy, ed­u­ca­tion, agri­cul­ture and con­nec­tiv­ity if the party wins in the up­com­ing par­lia­men­tary elections.

Kick start­ing the party cam­paign along with the man­i­festo launch at Depart­ment of Youth and Sports on Thurs­day, party pres­i­dent Lo­tay Tsh­er­ing told the au­di­ence that com­prised mostly youth that his prayer is not that DNT would win but the coun­try and the peo­ple.

Talk­ing on youthre­lated is­sues at the con­fer­ence, Lo­tay Tsh­er­ing said that just be­cause a lit­er­ate youth starts farm­ing does not mean he is an ed­u­cated farmer. “You can’t do with an un­spe­cial­ized school ed­u­ca­tion. You need spe­cific know-how on farm­ing.”

Lo­tay Tsh­er­ing said that DNT if elected would re­view class X cut-off point so that there is no high school stu­dent who is la­beled a “drop out.”

The party pres­i­dent said that un­der­em­ploy­ment is a greater prob­lem than un­em­ploy­ment in the coun­try re­fer­ring to the mis­match in skills and em­ploy­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties.

“The la­bor min­istry has no power to cre­ate jobs. They are just mid­dle­men. If DNT comes to power we will cre­ate a sep­a­rate agency to ad­dress the un­em­ploy­ment is­sue,” he said.

He added that for this they will need to tie up with civil so­ci­ety or­ga­ni­za­tions that are do­ing a great job at present.

“For ex­am­ple, we need flush toi­lets every­where. DNT would tie up with CSOs like Bhutan Toi­let Or­ga­ni­za­tion that are suf­fer­ing for want of funds to ful­fill this need.”

Com­ment­ing on the econ­omy, Lo­tay Tsh­er­ing said the in­come gap has widened and wealth is con­cen­trated in the hands of a few.

He nar­rated an in­ci­dent whereby he asked a me­nial la­borer about his earn­ings and the lat­ter replied that his whole day’s la­bor was worth only Nu. 200.

The la­borer told Lo­tay Tsh­er­ing that a kilo­gram of chilies cost Nu. 200 in the mar­ket so how was he and his fam­ily sup­posed to sur­vive?

“If DNT comes to power, we will in­crease the min­i­mum daily wage to Nu. 450,” said Lo­tay Tsh­er­ing.

Ad­di­tion­ally, Lo­tay Tsh­er­ing said that im­pos­ing the 5% voucher tax on ev­ery cit­i­zen is not equal­ity so DNT plans to do away with it.

DNT wants to es­tab­lish free Wi-Fi ac­cess points and al­low free host­ing of lo­cal con­tents.

Lo­tay Tsh­er­ing also thanked the for­mer gov­ern­ments for build­ing roads and said that DNT would im­prove on it by con­struct­ing roads to ev­ery chi­wog and es­tab­lish­ing a chi­wog cen­ter and of­fice.

He also talked about draft­ing Bhutan: Vi­sion 2045 doc­u­ment in close con­sul­ta­tion with all stake­hold­ers be­cause the year, His Majesty re­signs.

DNT will also fo­cus on pro­vid­ing spe­cial­ist ser­vices to ev­ery Ba­sic Health Unit in the coun­try and open a new re­fer­ral hos­pi­tal to lighten the load on the present one in Thim­phu.

The party pres­i­dent con­cluded that strength­en­ing an in­di­vid­ual party is not democ­racy but if all par­ties are equally strong, it is a sign of a vi­brant democ­racy.

DNT na­tional com­mit­ments: Es­tab­lish a mul­ti­dis­ci­plinary su­per-spe­cialty hos­pi­tal in Thim­phu to pro­vide var­i­ous health­care ser­vices

En­sure ac­cess to spe­cial­ist ser­vices like en­doscopy, ul­tra­sound and blood test at gewog lev­els

Up­grade hospi­tals in strate­gic places to en­able Bhutanese to avail of spe­cial­ist ser­vices within half­day travel time

Im­prove work­ing con­di­tion of health work­ers through bet­ter in­cen­tives, al­lowances and recog­ni­tion of ser­vice

Pro­mote our in­dige­nous medicine sys­tem as a cen­ter of re­gional and global ex­cel­lence Re­coup Nu 10B by strength­en­ing tax col­lec­tion and reg­u­lat­ing tax eva­sion

In­crease PIT ceil­ing to Nu 300,000

Ex­empt BIT for busi­nesses with less than Nu 200,000 turnover

Gen­er­ate ad­di­tional 5,200MW of hy­dropower by im­ple­ment­ing projects al­ready in Plan

Strengthen tourism sec­tor by es­tab­lish­ing Tourism De­vel­op­ment Board to spear­head the sec­tor. In­vest 10 per­cent of tourism roy­alty to pro­mote and mar­ket tourism Work to­wards a vi­brant pri­vate sec­tor by im­ple­ment­ing rec­om­men­da­tions of the Pri­vate Sec­tor De­vel­op­ment – The Way For­ward, 2016

Le­gal­ize in­for­mal sec­tor and es­tab­lish an agency to pro­tect, pro­mote and sup­port some 70 per­cent of Bhutanese work­force en­gaged in it

Draft Bhutan: Vi­sion 2045 doc­u­ment in close con­sul­ta­tion with all stake­hold­ers econ­omy. Es­tab­lish a ded­i­cated agency to man­age wa­ter dis­tri­bu­tion

Map all wa­ter sources for proper man­age­ment of the re­source

Ex­plore con­ver­sion of wet land to dry land, where ir­ri­ga­tion wa­ter is un­avail­able

Pro­tect wa­ter­sheds and sources to sus­tain wa­ter sup­ply. Con­vert Sam­rang project into a veg­etable farm­ing project

Pro­vide en­dow­ment fund to com­mu­nity lhakhangs to con­duct his­tor­i­cal ri­tu­als and an­nual fes­ti­vals with­out hav­ing to raise funds from com­mon peo­ple

Sup­port liveli­hood and pro­mote no­madic cul­ture of our high­land res­i­dents of 10 dzongkhags

En­cour­age veg­e­tar­ian meals at of­fi­cial func­tions Es­tab­lish an em­ploy­ment and liveli­hood cor­po­ra­tion to ad­dress the coun­try’s un­em­ploy­ment is­sue

Sup­port pri­vate sec­tor to cre­ate 5,000 jobs an­nu­ally to achieve full em­ploy­ment

In­crease min­i­mum daily wage to Nu 450

Rein­tro­duce one-year na­tional ser­vice pro­gram for grad­u­ates to gain ex­pe­ri­ence, un­der­stand na­tional is­sues and plan ca­reers

Make agri­cul­ture at­trac­tive for liveli­hood and em­ploy­ment through our Sonam Gongphel project Pro­cure farm pro­duce from farm­ers at a price an­nounced a year ahead

En­sure the state in­tro­duces new crop in­sur­ance schemes for farm­ers

In­stall cold stor­ages at strate­gic lo­ca­tions. Save on recharge through Su­ung-joen, an app of­fer­ing free call and mes­sag­ing ser­vices, en­ter­tain­ment and multi-me­dia

En­hance and sup­port on­line busi­ness op­por­tu­ni­ties

Es­tab­lish free Wi-Fi ac­cess points and al­low free host­ing of lo­cal con­tents

Re­move 5 per­cent voucher tax In­crease salaries twice dur­ing the ten­ure

In­sti­tute fort­nightly salaries

Save for ex­ec­u­tives, pro­vide uni­form travel al­lowances (TA) and daily sub­sis­tence al­lowance (DSA) to all civil ser­vants Re­view Class X cut-off point to en­able fi­nan­cially chal­lenged stu­dents to con­tinue un­til Class XII

En­able stu­dents who passed Class X but were dis­qual­i­fied by the cut-off point to re­turn to study un­til Class XII

Do away with ex­am­i­na­tions un­til Class VI

Make teach­ing a pro­fes­sion to vie for by of­fer­ing the best schol­ar­ships, bet­ter pay and al­lowances and pro­vid­ing more ad­min­is­tra­tive and sup­port staff

Re­view cen­tral schools to make it bet­ter and re­open com­mu­nity and pri­mary schools ben­e­fi­cial to cer­tain com­mu­ni­ties Base course all farm roads and make it func­tional through­out the year

Black­top or con­crete all roads to im­por­tant lhakhangs and Ba­sic Health Units (BHU), schools and re­main­ing gewog cen­tre (GC) roads

In­crease load car­ry­ing ca­pac­ity for trucks

Build a south­ern east – west high­way by link­ing towns and dzongkhags through set­tle­ments along the way

Shorten travel time by ini­ti­at­ing tun­nelling projects Re­view and adopt do­mes­tic work­ers’ pol­icy

Ini­ti­ate six-month ma­ter­nity leave in all cor­po­ra­tions and pri­vate firms

In­tro­duce al­lowances that match daily wage rate for women in ru­ral ar­eas dur­ing ini­tial months of child­birth

Pro­vide free san­i­tary pad to all girl-stu­dents in schools Es­tab­lish tshogpa of­fice in chi­wogs to as­sist peo­ple avail of public ser­vices

Con­trol stray dog pop­u­la­tion

Es­tab­lish con­ve­nient cre­ma­tion grounds with ad­e­quate fa­cil­i­ties

Youth de­tained by law for sub­stance abuse will be con­sid­ered for re­for­ma­tive mea­sures Build 2,500 flats for home own­er­ship

Ini­ti­ate sub­si­dized in­ter­est loan schemes for low-in­come groups

Lift ex­ist­ing rule lim­it­ing houses be­yond two­s­torey in dzongkhags

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