'Budget lacks vision, nothing for coastal districts'

Reacting to the budget, MP Nalin Kumar Kateel said that Rs 2 lakh loan waiver for farmers is the result of continuous fights by the BJP. But the total loan waiver has not been announced as announced by Kumaraswamy prior to the election.

While politicians from the ruling alliance have appreciated the state budget as people- and farmer-friendly, the BJP members have said the budget will be of little help to common man and the coastal districts.

Economic experts have pointed out the inability of the chief minister in playing the role of an able finance minister.

Urban Development and Housing Minister U T Khader said that the schemes, introduced by the previous Congress-led government such as construction of boat houses, Paschimavahini project, upgraded district prison at a cost of Rs 85 crore and vented dam in Harekala-Adyar at a cost of Rs 174 crore, will be continued.

“The chief minister has maintained the fiscal discipline. Farm loan waiver has been welcomed. Monthly subsidy under Mathrushree scheme has been increased to Rs 1,000 and the Sandhya Suraksha old age pension has been hiked to Rs 1,000 from Rs 600,” Khader said.

He also appreciated the scheme providing a grant of Rs 30 crore to the financially less privileged people who need to undergo organ transplantation.

Earmarking Rs 150 crore grants for the repair of government school buildings is commendable, Khader said.

Budget flayed

Reacting to the budget, MP Nalin Kumar Kateel said that Rs 2 lakh loan waiver for farmers is the result of continuous fights by the BJP. But the total loan waiver has not been announced as announced by Kumaraswamy prior to the election.

Mangaluru South MLA D Vedavyas Kamath said there is no word about the coastal district in the state budget. The budget is the worst budget ever. No funds have been granted to provide relief to victims of recent rain havoc in Mangaluru. Although a request was made to announce a Rs 120-crore compensation package for the evacuees from the Thumbe dam catchment area, it was not considered. Also, no funds have been provided towards the drinking water and underground drainage works. Power tariff has been hiked. No facilities are extended to fishermen, he charged.

Kamath questioned the need to provide subsidies to three star hotels and service apartments. The people will give a befitting answer in the upcoming Mangaluru City Corporation and Lok Sabha elections, he claimed

'It is disappointing'

Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha district president Ravikiran Punacha said that fixing a ceiling of Rs 2 lakh for farm loan waiver is disappointing. The farmers, who have repaid the loans on time, will only get a benefit of Rs 25,000. Moreover, waiving the loans availed only till December 31, 2017 is of less help to the farmers, he said.

Former professor in Economics Prof G V Joshi said that the budget lacks clarity when it comes to the farmers’ loan waiver scheme. "The nature of the loan to be waived is not specified. This way, the state budget is a lesson for all leaders of all political parties, that unrealistic promises should not be made earlier to election. Finance is a department which requires an individual attention. H D Kumaraswamy’s lack of expertise as a finance minister reflects in the budget. There are no schemes to improve infrastructure for higher education. No measures have been taken to develop tourism in coastal districts," he explained.

'Worst-ever budget'

MLA Raghupathi Bhat said the budget presented by the JD(S) and Congress coalition government is the worst ever in the past 15 years.

“The budget has deprived the coastal and Malnad districts of development programmes. It is limited only to the progress of a few districts. The chief minister has taken a sweet revenge against the voters in this area who had rejected his party,” Bhat said.

He welcomed the government's move to observe Shankaracharya Jayanti and also insisted on observing the birth anniversary of saint Madhwacharya.

‘Fruitful budget’

District Congress Committee Janardhan Thonse lauded the budget and said the it is a fruitful one which caters to the needs of all classes and section in the society.

Udiupi Chamber of Commerce President Krishna Rao Kodancha said the budget was not all required. It has nothing for industries and commerce. It is a self-centric budget and is not for the entire state, he added.

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'Budget lacks vision, nothing for coastal districts'

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