Siddaramaiah presents populist budget ahead of elections

ANI | Updated: Feb 16, 2018 20:12 IST

Bengaluru (Karnataka) [India] Feb. 16 (ANI): Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Friday presented populist state budget 2018 ahead of the assembly elections.

He announced schemes for health, sops for farmers, free LPG connections etcetera.

Presenting the last budget of his current tenure, Siddaramaiah said, "Total size of budget is Rs 209181 Crore. Rs. 22620 crore increased from last year showing a 12.12 percent growth. The Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) in the year 2017-18 grew at the rate of 8.5 percent as against the rate of 7.5 percent during 2016-17."

He said that Karnataka has maintained first place for the second successive year in attracting industrial investment.

He also announced Rs 2500 crore package for Bengaluru.

According to budget, 30 lakh beneficiaries will get free gas connection with twin burner stove and two refills.

In a bid to promote inter-caste marriage, the Chief Minister announced Rs 3 lakh incentive for a scheduled caste boy marrying a girl from any other caste and Rs 5 lakh for a Scheduled Caste girl marrying a boy from another caste.

For farmers, the Chief Minister announced 'Raitha Belaku' scheme to benefit 70 lakh dry land farmers with Rs 5000 per hectare up to a maximum of Rs 10000.

He also announced farm loan waiver to the tune of Rs 1 lakh from cooperative banks after the death of the farmer announced.

On the health front, he announced that the 'Arogya Karnataka Yojana' (universal health coverage), will be launched this month.

"Arogya Karnataka Yojana will be implemented across the state by the end of this year. The scheme will make available primary, and specific secondary and tertiary treatments to all people," Siddaramaiah said.

A total budgetary allocation of Rs 6,645 crore has been made for the health and family welfare department. (ANI)