Karnataka govt claims credit for smooth implementation of Central schemes

Bengaluru: Apparently conveying its dismay over allocations towards Centrally sponsored schemes for the state, the Siddaramaiah government today claimed credit for ensuring their continuity with smooth implementation despite many structural changes in them.

“Of late, there have been many changes in the structure of centrally sponsored schemes involving allocation to the state, sharing pattern and components of the schemes,” Governor Vajubhai Vala said in his address to the joint session of the legislature, which began its five day session.

He said “Although such changes would have affected the schemes at the ground level, my government has ensured that they continue to be implemented smoothly including by giving advance release from the state government.”

Last year too, in his address reflecting Congress government’s policies and priorities, Vala had said there was a net reduction in actual transfer of resources to Karnataka and lack of clarity on central allocation and revised sharing pattern in many centrally sponsored schemes had affected implementation of developmental schemes.

Stating that the government was committed to welfare and development of the poor, weak and the disadvantaged, the Governor said during the last four years, government had taken strong, decisive and sustainable steps to promote the development of an inclusive society where all sections of society have equitable access to opportunities and resources.

Despite challenges posed by court orders in the Cauvery and Mahadayi water disputes, government has stood firmly with the people in protecting land, water and language and remains committed to securing the rightful share of the people of Karnataka in the Cauvery, Krishna and Mahadayi river waters.

Vala said the government is determined to hasten the march of Karnataka towards a progressive and inclusive society, based on principles, not only of equity and justice, but also of compassion and tolerance.

On various welfare measures taken up, he pointed out that “unprecedented” and “consecutive” droughts for the last six years have seriously disrupted the livelihood of farmers.

Stating that 139 taluks were declared as drought affected during Kharif season of the current year and 160 taluks during Rabi season, he said, Rs 1195 crore has been released since April 2016 for drought relief and additional support measures for drought mitigation.

Pointing out that the government had promised to invest Rs 50,000 crore for irrigation in five years so as to develop irrigation potential in the state, particularly in the Upper Krishna Basin, he said during the last 4 years Rs 42,540 crores was provided to major and medium irrigation projects.

Government has been striving to make Karnataka hunger-free, he said, adding, to enrich its flagship ‘Anna Bhagya’ scheme that serves over one crore families identified as priority households, iron-fortified salt and vitamin A & D fortified palm oil are being supplied this year.

He said one kg of pulses is added to the entitlement of all priority and antyodaya households, who will receive it at 50 per cent subsidy from 2017.