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After Centre, States Adopt KCR’s Subsidy Scheme, Telangana CM Takes Farm Loan Waiver Route

In his vote-on-account budget, K Chandrashekhar Rao has proposed to waive all agriculture term loans up to Rs 1 lakh for which an allocation of Rs 6,000 crore had been made along with several other farmer-friendly schemes.

PV Ramana Kumar | News18

Updated:February 22, 2019, 4:22 PM IST
After Centre, States Adopt KCR’s Subsidy Scheme, Telangana CM Takes Farm Loan Waiver Route
Telangana CM K Chandrashekar Rao presents the vote-on-account budget in the assembly on Friday.(image credit: Twitter @trspartyonline)

Hyderabad: Telangana chief minister K Chandrashekhar Rao has proposed to waive all agriculture term loans up to Rs 1 lakh outstanding as on December 11, 2018, in the vote-on-account budget for the financial year 2019-2020 presented in the assembly on Friday.

"Towards this, an amount of Rs 6,000 crore is proposed," KCR, who also holds the finance portfolio, said.

Of late, several BJP and Congress-ruled states have announced farm loan waivers worth crores. Congress chief Rahul Gandhi has promised a nationwide waiver if his party is voted to power in the upcoming Lok Sabha election.

Addressing the House on the occasion, the Telangana chief minister said, “Earlier, the Gujarat model of development was followed. But now, everyone is talking about the Telangana model of development and welfare. Our programme is a role model for the entire country. Most of the states are adopting it and the Union government has adapted it in the form of the PM-KISAN scheme.”

A budget of an estimated Rs 1,82,017 crore was presented. While the revenue expenditure is estimated at Rs 1,31,629 crore, there is an estimated capital expenditure of Rs 32,815 crore. Rao said there was a financial deficit of Rs 27,749 crore and revenue surplus of Rs 6,564 crore.

KCR said the gross state domestic product (GSDP) during 2013-14 was only 4.2 per cent against a 5.9 per cent national growth.

“However, after the formation of Telangana as a state, the GSDP increased to 10.6% in 2018-19 which is more than the national growth,” he said.

The state government has also introduced a budget of Rs 2 lakh crore of which a major portion will be allocated to the government’s flagship programmes for irrigation, welfare and agriculture sectors. Under this, Rs 22,500 crore has been allocated to irrigation and Rs 20,170 crore for agriculture.

In keeping with his election promises, the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) chief’s budget has called for policies like an increase in pensions and investment support to farmers.

Under the investment support scheme 'Rythu Bandhu', the government is currently extending support of Rs 4,000 per acre per crop season amounting to Rs 8,000 per annum.

“I propose to increase this support to Rs 5,000 per acre per crop. The total support in a year will be Rs 10,000 per acre," Rao said.

As part of his another pre-poll promise, the Telangana chief minister proposed to introduce unemployment allowance of Rs 3,016 per month to those eligible.

"The details of the scheme are being worked out," he added.

Apart from this, the monthly 'Aasara' pension of Rs 1,000 to the aged, widows, single women, beedi workers, people suffering from filariasis, handloom workers and toddy-tappers, has been proposed to be increased to Rs 2,016.

"For differently abled persons, I propose to increase their monthly pension from Rs 1,500 to Rs 3, 016,” the chief minister said.

After successful completion of eye check-ups under the ‘Kanti Velugu’ scheme, the government now proposed to carry out free ENT and dental tests for all, for which a budgetary allocation of Rs 5,536 crore was made.

The TRS government also promised to provide a relief to the state’s unemployed youth and allotted Rs 1,810 crore for the same.

Meanwhile, Rs 16,580 crore was allocated for the development members of scheduled caste communities, Rs 9,780 crore to scheduled tribes and Rs 2,004 crore for minorities.

KCR said that since the schemes that were taken up to protect community occupations like weaving, sheep herding, fishing and tailoring have contributed significantly to the growth of the state, it has been given priority in the current budget as well.

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