Paschimavahini: Ivan wants hike in budgetary allocation

Member of Legislative Council Ivan D’Souza on Saturday said that he would plead with Chief Minister Siddaramaiah for a hike in budgetary allocation for the Paschimavahini water project.

Addressing reporters, D’Souza, who is the Chief Whip of the government in the Council, said, “In the recent budget, the chief minister, who also holds charge of finance ministry, had announced allocation of Rs 100 crore to build check dams under the project. However, it appears to be too meagre against the demand for a minimum of Rs 2,000 crore.”

D’Souza said, as the debate over the budget is still underway in both the houses of the Legislature, he would exhort the chief minister in the floor of the house, to consider the demand in supplementary budget in the interest of the people of the coastal districts.

Groundwater
Saying that the project is aimed at rejuvenating the depleting groundwater table in the coastal region, D’Souza underlined the need for the project, with the water-level dipping from 250 feet to 450 feet at borewells.

“The check dams would be helpful in this regard, as they will be built across the rivers flowing westwards, to ward off the impending threat of shortage in drinking water supply that may be expected due to the Yettinahole drinking water project,” said D’Souza.

“Similarly, efforts will be made to convince the chief minister to include one ‘Anna Canteen’ in each of the 60 wards in Mangaluru City Corporation (MCC) limits in the supplementary budget, against the 198 canteens announced to be set up across the state. According to the budget, apart from the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) limits, one each of the canteens will be set up in every district headquarters,” D’Souza cited.

NRI corpn?
“There is an increasing influx of people from the coast travelling abroad in search of greener pastures, but some among them returning home later, jobless. It would, therefore, be better to strengthen the existing NRI forum in the state or to set up a separate corporation, to be able to generate employment opportunities for such distressed lot,” he demanded further.

D’Souza, who also sided with the pending demand for taluk status for Hebri in Udupi district, welcomed the decision of the government to create 49 more new taluks in the state. “While the BJP government in the past made tall claims in this regard, the present Congress-led government has made it a reality,” he claimed.
DH News Service

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