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Karnataka Opposition demands Centre to announce special economic package

Our Bureau Bengaluru | Updated on May 08, 2020 Published on May 08, 2020

Former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah   -  H_S_MANJUNATH /THE HINDU

Opposition parties in Karnataka demanded that Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa should push for a ₹50,000 crore special economic package from the Centre.

Speaking to reporters after attending an all-party meet to discuss Covid-19 crisis and impact of lockdown, Opposition leader and Congress Legislative Party (CLP) leader Siddaramaiah said, “Chief Minister should immediately demand a special economic package from the prime minister and also to declare the pandemic as ‘National Disaster’.”

Representatives of Congress, JDS, JDU, CPI (M), CPI and few representatives from farmers organisations participated in the meet.

He urged the State government to immediately provide transportation and marketing facilities for farm produce in the State. “The government should procure directly from the farmers if there are no traders to buy.”

“Government should scientifically assess the loss incurred to farmers, fruit growers, poultry and other livestock rearers and compensate them at least 50 per cent of the loss,” said Siddaramaiah.

Raising the issue of procurement at taluk and district level, he said “The State government should set up a revolving fund of at least ₹5,000 crore and use these funds to open more procurement centres at the village panchayat level to buy farmers’ produce in case the market price falls below the cost price.”

The Opposition parties also urged the government to immediately release relief funds to drought-stricken taluks. “The government should conduct a joint survey on the extent of the affected area and increase the compensation amount from ₹13,500 per hectare to ₹25,000 per hectare,” demanded Siddaramaiah.

“The Prime Minister and Chief Minister should release minimum of ₹10,000 crore to all co-operative banks and financial institutions to provide loans at zero interest to the farmers to prepare for the coming agriculture season. Money is required to procure seed, fertiliser, essential medicines and other equipment,” explained Siddaramaiah.

During the Covid-19 induced lockdown, the worst affected were organised and unorganised sector workers, artists, migrants. To help them chief minister should provide relief of ₹10,000 to all along with, 10 kg rice, milk and 16 essential commodities even if they do not have BPL card.”

On the issue of MSMEs, the Opposition leader demanded a special package of ₹10,000 crore has to be announced to give impetus for MSMEs and ensure job creation.

Published on May 08, 2020

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