CPI(M) stage walkout over inadequate allocation for welfare

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Hyderabad, Mar 24 (UNI) Members of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) today staged a walkout in the Andhra Pradesh Assembly over the alleged ''inadequate'' allocation made for the welfare of Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, Backward Classes, Minorities, women, children and the disabled in the Rs 1,00,000 crore budget.

After the walkout, the House adopted the demands for grants for the departments of SCs, STs, BCs, Minorities, Women, Children and disabled welfare, even as the main opposition TDP staged a noisy protest.

Amid din, Panel Speaker N Manohar adjourned the House to meet again tomorrow.

Leading the protest, CPI(M) floor leader N Narasimaiah claimed that while the state's revenue had increased by three to four times, allocation for welfare of weaker sections of people had not been raised in commensurate with the increase in revenue to the state exchequer.

The Congress had come to power, promising to ameliorate the condition of poor people but was catering to the needs of the affluent sections, he alleged, expressing his dissatisfaction with the replies of the Ministers concerned to the debate on demands for grants for various departments.

Earlier, CPI(M) legislator M A Gafoor, seeking clarifications from the Minorities Welfare Minister Mohammed Ali Shabbir, maintained that the government should have allocated at least Rs 1,000 crore for the welfare of Minorities, who constituted about ten per cent of the state population and were entitiled to Rs 10,000 crore. But the government had allocated only Rs 181.02 crore for their welfare, he regretted.

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