Centre not providing K'taka its share of funds: CM

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Bangalore, Jul 30 (UNI) Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa today accused the Centre of ignoring the state and not providing its 'rightful share' of funds for various programmes.

In his over two-hour-long reply on the debate on the budget estimates for 2008-09, he alleged that even while granting setting up of IITs in various states recently, the Centre had ignored Karnataka. He had already written to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in this regard and appealed to him to set right the ''injustice'' meted out to the state. The state was ready to provide land and other amenities if an IIT was sanctioned, he added.

He said the focal point of his budget was the farming community which had been ''ignored'' since Independence. Keeping this in mind, he had announced a number of welfare measures to improve the farmers' living conditions, he added.

Prominent among those were provision of Rs 1,000 each to 50 lakh families of dryland farmers towards purchase of seed and manure, free power supply to 15 lakh farmers, loan to 14 lakh farmers, weavers and fishermen at three per cent interest rate and subsidy of Rs two per litre of milk to over five lakh milk producers.

He announced that the government earmarked Rs 10 crore towards expenditure in sending farmers' teams, each comprising 1,000 farmers, to various countries including China to study agriculture progress.

An 'Agriculture Mission,' headed by him would also be taken up for the overall development of agriculture, he added.

He also announced that the government would make use of remote sensing to unearth illegal mining and set up special squads for the purpose. No fresh licence was granted or old licenses were renewed after he assumed office, he clarified.

He announced that issuance of fresh permits to start bars and wine shops, as announced in the budget, would be withheld keeping in view the views expressed by various members during the debate. Other announcements included, issuance of BPL cards to plantation workers and construction of 1,000 rooms for devotees thronging the Tirumala hills in Andhra Pradesh.

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