Kerala Budget gives thrust to welfare schemes, price-control

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Kerala
Thiruvananthapuram, Feb 10: With Assembly polls just months away, the LDF Government in Kerala today (Feb 10) presented a people-centric Budget with a focus to welfare measures, price-control programmes and infrastructure development.

Besides raising the minimum welfare pension to Rs 400, Finance Minister T M Isaac Thomas, who presented the Budget in the Assembly, unveiled a new pension scheme for domestic aides, the majority of whom are women.

The Budget for 2011-12 also proposed measures to strengthen the social security net for below poverty line (BPL) sections, bringing four million families under a free insurance scheme.

Seeking to insulate the poor from the impact of price rise, 40 lakh families will be provided rice at Rs 2 a kg.

Stepping up the state-subsidised distribution network, 3,000 ration shops across the state would be made franchisees of the state Civil Supplies Corporation, through which a variety of food articles and basic provisions would be provided.

It also proposed a special package for improving roads and building new links throughout the state, where polls are due in May. The Budget made special provisions for improving amenities in five major cities, including the state capital.

Under this, Thiruvananthapuram will get Rs 250 crore, Kochi Rs 202 crore, Kozhikode Rs 180 crore, Thrissur Rs 142 crore and Kollam Rs 120 crore.

PTI

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