Congress president Rahul Gandhi announced Monday that his party would ensure "minimum income guarantee" for every poor person in the country if it is voted to power in the coming Lok Sabha polls. 


The announcement comes ahead of the Union Budget, the last to be presented by the Narendra Modi government before the polls due in later this year. 


It also follows the NDA government's decision to give 10 per cent quota to the economically backward section in the general category. 


"The Congress has decided to take a historic decision…The Congress-led government is going to give minimum income guarantee. This means, every poor person in India will have a minimum income. This means there will be no hungry, poor people in India (any longer)," Gandhi said. 

He was addressing a 'Kisaan Abhaar Sammelan' here to express gratitude to Chhattisgarh's people, particularly farmers, for voting the Congress to power in the state after 15 years. 


Asserting that he gets done what he says, Gandhi added the minimum income guarantee would be implemented across the country. 


Later, he tweeted, "We cannot build a new India while millions of our brothers & sisters suffer the scourge of poverty." 


Gandhi also said the Congress had promised to waive farm loans in Chhattisgarh within 10 days of coming to power, but implemented the decision within a day after forming the government. 


"If voted to power in 2019, the Congress is committed to a Minimum Income Guarantee for every poor person, to help eradicate poverty & hunger. This is our vision & our promise," he said in his tweet. 


"We don't want two Indias. There will be one India, and in that India, the Congress will give minimum income to every poor person. No government in the world has done this till now. The Congress is going to do that, it will be a historic feat," Gandhi said at the rally. 


Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram on Monday termed as "historic" party president Rahul Gandhi's announcement that minimum income will be guaranteed to every poor if Congress returns to power, saying it will mark a turning point in the lives of the downtrodden. In a series of tweets, the former finance and home minister said 140 million people were lifted out of poverty between 2004 and 2014, when the Congress-led UPA was in power. 


Chidambaram said the principle of Universal Basic Income (UBI) has been discussed extensively in the last two years and the time has come to adapt the principle to the country's situation and the needs and implement the same for the poor. 


"We will explain our plan in the Congress Manifesto," he said. Chidambaram has been made the chairman of Manifesto Committee of the Congress for 2019 polls.


There is a buzz that Modi Government may announce a universal basic income  in the interim Budget.that will be announced by acting financ  minister Piyush Goyal on Feb 1.