Prior to leaving for New Delhi on February 28, Chief Minister K. Chand-rashekar Rao convened a meeting with Harish Rao and finance officials to discuss Budget proposals. (Photo: Facebook)
HYDERABAD: With just three more days to go for the presentation of Budget 2022-23 in the Legislative Assembly on March 7, finance minister T. Harish Rao and department officials are giving final touches to present a ‘populist budget’ with more allocations to welfare schemes. Several welfare schemes are facing fund crunch and the state government wants to implement welfare schemes effectively in the run-up to the 2023 Assembly polls by increasing budget allocations.
Prior to leaving for New Delhi on February 28, Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao convened a meeting with Harish Rao and finance officials to discuss Budget proposals.
The Chief Minister is understood to have sought more funds for welfare schemes in the budget. Irrigation and agriculture remained priority for the TRS government in the previous budgets.
Sources said Dalit Bandhu would get lion’s share of allocations in the new budget at Rs 20,000 crore. Allocations to irrigation projects, Mission Bhagiratha and other infrastructure projects are likely to come down.
Higher allocations are being made to Aasara pensions, Rs 1 per kg subsidy rice, Rythu Bandhu, Rythu Bima, Kalyana Laxmi, Shaadi Mubarak, Aarogyasri, fee reimbursement, scholarships, mess and cosmetic charges for students in welfare hostels, unemployment allowance, free power to agriculture, crop loan waiver scheme etc.
Lakhs of applications seeking Aasara pensions, ration cards, subsidy loans from BC, SC, ST, MBC corporations etc are pending with the government due to paucity of funds. The pending promises of 2018 Assembly polls such as Rs 1 lakh crop loan waiver, Rs 5 lakh financial assistance to poor to build house if they own a plot, reduction of age limit for Aasara pensions and unemployment allowance could not be implemented even after three years and are expected to get higher allocations.