Cabinet approves caste census in State next year

Exercise likely in April-May or October

Cabinet approves caste census in State next year

The State Cabinet on Thursday gave its nod for taking up a caste census that would throw up the reality of the socio-economic status of communities in the State and whether the deprived are getting the benefits of reservation.

Briefing reporters after the Cabinet meeting, Law Minister T B Jayachandra said the census would be conducted in April-May next year and each and every household in the State would be covered under the survey.

While teachers would take up the enumeration job, resource persons from various departments would be roped in to provide inputs on the methodology of the survey.
The census would be conducted under the aegis of the Karnataka Backward Classes Commission.

This will be the first caste-based survey in the State since 1931. While the caste census was first mooted nine years ago, the survey could not move forward for various reasons.
The census has been fixed for April-May to coincide with vacations for schools. In case the Lok Sabha elections are held during the same period, the census would be taken up in October next year, the minister said.

A total of Rs 111 crore would be released for the census during the current and next financial years, Jayachandra said.

At the same time, the government will take up the process of appointing the chairman and members to the Commission, he said.

Besides caste and sub-caste, other socio-economic details to be gathered during the census include annual income, domestic expenditure, household data, occupation of household members, source of drinking water, lighting facility, immovable assets among others.

The State Cabinet decided to make it mandatory for all fair price shops to remain open between 1st and 10th of every month (including Sundays and holidays) to ensure that the beneficiaries avail themselves of the Anna Bhagya scheme.

Purchase of rice

The Cabinet gave its nod for the purchase of five lakh quintals of rice for the Anna Bhagya scheme directly from the mill points by paying a minimum support price (MSP) of Rs 2,400 per quintal.

At present, the government is buying paddy at a minimum support price of Rs 1,600 from farmers. The Cabinet also decided to buy one lakh metric tonnes of Jyoti paddy at MSP of Rs 1,600 per quintal.

The Cabinet gave approval for allocation of Rs 314 crore for the Ksheera Bhagya scheme, wherein over 65 lakh children in 51,000 government schools and 39 lakh children in anganwadi centres across the State are provided 150 ml of milk thrice a week.

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