Public climate manifesto demands a sustainable development pathway for Bihar

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Patna, October 7, 2020: Prominent civil society organizations and citizen groups of Bihar have released a ‘Public Climate Manifesto’ for the state assembly election-2020, which aims to seek commitments and pledges from all political parties to address the deepening climate change crisis. The manifesto is a part of a citizens-led public campaign ‘’Bolega Bihar, Akshay Urja Iss Baar’’ which is demanding climate solutions as part of Bihar’s growth and development.

The public manifesto is a collective effort and prepared after a series of constructive dialogues and consultation with diverse stakeholders and various sections of the society including farmers, laborers, health workers, women, youths, Panchayat representatives, Mukhiyas, MLAs, MPs, political party spokespersons, doctors, academics, journalists, industry and business leaders. The aim of the manifesto is to urge decision makers to take formidable steps towards a climate responsive economy through a fully electrified state of Bihar to increase quality of life, spearheaded by the empowerment of agricultural workers and the equipping of healthcare facilities, at a critical time both politically and during the COVID-19 health crisis.

Speaking at the unveiling ceremony, Mr. Ramapati Kumar, CEO of CEED said that, “Bihar is at the cusp of climate transition and it seeks resolution from all political parties to turn this opportunity into a political consensus for ensuring a brighter future for Bihar. This election is unique as it is being conducted in the unprecedented crisis of COVID-19 pandemic and also at a time, when the state faces catastrophic impact of climate change. This is the right time to bring public demands around mitigating the climate impacts and ensure that it becomes a top priority for all political parties.” People of Bihar are expecting their leaders to demonstrate this leadership and showcase climate solutions that will take Bihar on the path of prosperity, Mr. Kumar concluded.

The main demands documented in the Public Climate Manifesto to revive and transform Bihar’s economy and infrastructure range from robust policy measures for Decentralized Renewable Energy Mission, Clean Air Framework, Solarization of Agriculture, Sustainable Urban Transport Mission, Solar Mission for Healthcare, and an integrated policy framework for preserving nature and rejuvenation of traditional water bodies.

Speaking on behalf of women industry groups, Mrs. Usha Jha, President, Bihar Mahila Udyog Sangh said that, “This public manifesto is not simply a list of pledges but a vision document for every political party which intends to seek support and hold sway with the voters. The manifesto truly reflects the concerns and aspirations of people from all walks of life for favoring a paradigm shift in current development narrative and alternatively brings clean, green and sustainable solutions for replicating the historical glory of Bihar.”

While speaking at the launch of manifesto, Mr. Kaushlendra, Managing Trustee of Kaushalya Foundation said that, “We strongly believe that political parties must come out of their ideological differences and must join hands with farmers of Bihar to develop climate resilient agriculture policy powered by renewable energy in letter and spirit for better realization of people’s aspirations.”
The campaign ‘Bolega Bihar, Akshay Urja Iss Baar’ will mobilize and engage with all sections of society across Bihar through various outreach activities such as ‘Kisaan Charcha, Health Dialogue, Jan Swasthya Sunwai, Town Hall meetings, Solar Samvad Yatra’ to raise awareness on solar energy and to bring the demands of citizens of Bihar at the public domain for wider consideration for all political parties in the upcoming State election.

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