The saffron outfit released its manifesto (vision document), just five days ahead of the voting on October 15, and sought to make development its poll plank.

Despite being a strong votary of small states, BJP shied away from promising statehood to Vidarbha, an emotive issue which has figured prominently in the campaign of parties like Shiv Sena and MNS, which are both opposed to any bifurcation of Maharashtra.

"Creation of a new state is not just a state issue but a national issue. Our vision document has been prepared keeping development as the main poll plank, but our position on smaller states continues to be the same.

"We will go ahead with our plan once there is a consensus on the issue (Vidarbha statehood). We created a state like Chhattisgarh without including it in our manifesto," Vinay Sahasrabuddhe, the BJP national vice-president, said while releasing the document here.

Some of the major sops being offered by the party include scrapping of LBT (local body tax) -- a key demand of traders -- and a revision of the tax structure on petrol and diesel to further bring down their prices in the state.

Offering goodies for voters of the fairer sex, the party promised that a specific amount of pension would be provided to women aged 60 years or more if it is voted to power.

The pension will be provided only to those women who are completely dependent on their spouse or children and have not earned any income in their lifetime.

BJP also promised to enact a new law to provide relief to women and minors who have been languishing in jails/remand homes without any concrete evidence or clear reason.

The party also said that working journalists who have attained the age of 65 would be eligible for pension.

It promised a 50 percent grant for drip irrigation programme, a welfare scheme for sugarcane cutting farmers and formation of special authority for the development of information technology.

The party also promised a social security scheme for old farmers and proposed to financially empower Marathi medium schools.

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