BJP maiden budget disappointing: Opposition leader

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Bangalore, July 17 (UNI) Opposition leader in the Karnataka Legislative Council Veeranna Mathikatti today termed the State Budget presented in the Assembly by Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa as 'disappointing' and lacked 'shortsightedness'.

"It was prepared keeping in view the Lok Sabha election. It has disappointed common man who expected more in the BJP government's maiden budget", Mr Mathikatti told newsmen here.

He said that the BJP party, which made inroads in South by coming to power in Karnataka, has failed to keep up its promises made in its election manifesto and also during pre-budget discussion and has neglected Irrigation, Power, employment generation and Rural development.

Mr Mathikatti said only 13.39 per cent in the budget has been earmarked for Irrigation which was very low as compared to previous government's allocations.

He said that the Chief Minister had announced in the budget free supply of power to irrigation bumps upto 10 HP but no mention was about funds for generation of power. "When the State is facing shortage of 5000 WM of power how can farmers expect free power. It is nothing but cheating them (farmers) by announcing free supply without taking steps to increase the power generation. Power generation should have been accorded top priority not only to help farmers put also industry and growth of the State", he added.

KPCC General Secretary V S Ugrappa, took exception to the idea of increasing the retirement age for State government employees from 58 to 60 years and said the it would lead to more unemployment problem and youth would be deprived of employment in government services.

He said that due to poor monsoon 130 taluks in the State were facing drought situation, but the Chief Minister had ignored rural development and drinking water in his budget.

Mr Ugrappa said that Mr Yeddyurappa has 'succumbed to pressures' from liquor lobby and hence decreased license fee from Rs 50,000 to Rs 5,000.

Another senior Congress leader and former Union Minister M V Rajasekharan termed the budget as 'poor' in nature as it failed to meet the aspirations of the people. "Needed funds were not provided in the budget for generation of 1000 WM of power during the year priority was not given for non-conventional energy and there is no sufficient provision for development of Education and skill development, he felt.

UNI MSP SR TS1637

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