The third front printed its manifesto for the upcoming state assembly elections luring the masses with legalizing slums, making food grains available at rupees 2 to the poor and guaranteeing reservations for Economic Backward Classes. Regularizing slums till January 1, 2009; providing reservation for Marathas and poor Brahmins; setting up a huge statue of Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar on the Arabian Sea and calling it the “Statue of Equality”; distributing rice and wheat at Rs 2/kg and providing free education to all students till Class XII. These are some of the populist promises made by the Third Front leaders in its 20-page manifesto released in the city. Front leader Ramdas Athavale initially announced that all slums in Mumbai would be regularized till December 31, 2009. When pointed out by the media that this would only encourage more migrants to come to the city, Ramdas Athavale took a two minute break to confer with other party leaders present at the conference. He then retracted from his earlier date and said that the cut-off date proposed by them would now be January 1, 2009. Ramdas Athavle also said that they will oppose forceful allotment of plots to industrial houses for converting them into SEZs. With cameraperson Dhiraj Mishra, Ranjeet Gupta for NMTV News.

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