Bengaluru, June 1 (IANS) Former Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai on Thursday urged his successor Siddaramaiah not to cut down on other pro-people schemes implemented earlier “at the cost of freebies”.
The Siddaramaiah-led Congress government is holding an important cabinet meeting on Friday to discuss and make an announcement on five guarantees it promised in the recent Assembly elections.
“It is the duty of a responsible government to continue all the development projects of all the departments in view of the development of the state. The government should commit to the expenditures and give a public statement in this regard.
“The guarantee schemes require Rs 50,000 crore and this should not take a toll on the economy of the state. The people should not be burdened indirectly. I am confident that you (Siddaramaiah) would initiate steps in this direction,” Bommai stated in his letter to the Chief Minister.
“From last two weeks you have been holding a series of meetings towards implementation of guarantees assured by your party. I want to bring to your notice that there is a necessity to take care of prominent sectors such as finance, education, health, women development, and infrastructure. The government should also protect the interests of farmers, Dalits, poor, and backward classes.
“It is not feasible to cut down on the short-term loan facility up to Rs 5 lakh to farmers; under the Minimum Support Price scheme in 2023-24 budget, Rs 1,500 crore have been given to increase the revolving fund to Rs 3,500 crore. This should not be reduced. The funds to build 7,601 class rooms under Viveka scheme and construction of 9,556 school buildings under various schemes should not be withdrawn,” he added.
Bommai also said that the free dialysis service for beneficiaries has been increased to 1 lakh cycles, and increasing chemotherapy cycles for cancer patients schemes should not be affected. The construction of hostels for backward classes and SC, ST students is underway and the funds should not be reduced, he noted.
The Congress has promised to provide free 10 kg rice for every member of BPL card holders’ family under the Anna Bhagya scheme; Rs 2,000 for every woman head of the family under Gruha Lakshmi scheme; Rs 3,000 allowance for unemployed graduates and Rs 1,500 for unemployed diploma holders for two years under Yuva Nidhi scheme; free bus travel for women in state owned buses, and 200 units free electricity for households under Gruha Jyothi scheme.
With the promises seen as helping the Congress to win the elections and now the party leadership is under pressure to deliver on the promises. The opposition BJP and JD-S are taking potshots at the Congress over the delay.