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MP Assembly clears 2006-07 budget

Written by: Staff

Bhopal, Mar 22(UNI) The Madhya Pradesh Assembly today passed by voice vote the Rs 36,196.13 crore budetary demands for 2006-07 and the relevant appropriation bill.

Finance Minister Raghavji, replying to the debate on the finance bill, announced tax exemption for trade in pulses and to keep Khandsari and jaggery out of the VAT regime.

The Local Area Development Fund of MLAs would be raised to Rs 80 lakh from Rs 60 lakh, he said.

The legislators, who participated in the debate, sought to raise MLALAD fund to Rs 1 crore. Initially, the Finance Minister agreed to raise it to Rs 70 lakh and later raised it to Rs 80 lakh on the Speaker's intervention.

Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan assured to consider the demand for allotting discretionary fund for MLAs.

Mr Satyadev Katare (Congress), who initiated the debate on the bill after the demand for grants of various departments had been passed, grilled the government for the deteriorating law and order and backtracking on the promise to give regular power supply to farmers.

He alleged nepotism in the appointment of the Managing Director of the Madhya Pradesh Power Generation Company saying the incumbent was not among the 58 applicants who responded to advertisements in this regard.

Expressing concern over the deteriorating law and order situation, Mr Katare said many functionaries of the ruling BJP were involved in heinous crimes.

He cited among others kidnapping of a doctor for ransom in Morena district, involvement of a BJP MLA's son threatening to kill a former Collector of Shahdol district, murder of a journalist in Betul and CD scam involving a senior BJP leader as instances of deteriorating law and order.

Mr Katare, quoting government documents, pointed out that power generation was on the decline and the BJP had failed to fulfill its poll promise to provide uninterrupted power supply to farmers.

Mr Vanshmani Prasad Verma (Samajwadi Party) alleged that the government had failed to give protection to Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe people from atrocities by caste Hindus.

Discrimination on political lines was adopted even in carrying out development works, particularly in road construction, he added.

Mr Lal Singh Arya (BJP) strongly defended the government saying despite decline in power generation, power supply was streamlined giving relief to farmers and students. Cultural activities had been given a boost, he added.


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