A sum of Rs. 117 crore will be sanctioned for the census: CM

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Tuesday announced that he had decided to extend the scope of the proposed caste census — which was originally to cover only the backward communities — to all communities. This is a bid to get a clear perspective on the development status of all communities.

Participating in a programme organised by the Social Welfare Department in Bangalore for the launch of ‘Vidya Siri’, a scheme under which backward class students, who do not get seats in the department’s hostels to pursue post-matric education, would get a monthly stipend of Rs. 1,500 for 10 months to manage their accommodation, Mr. Siddaramaiah said the aim was to learn the socio-economic-education-employment and political status of each community.

‘For fine-tuning’

“Only through such a survey, will we be able to understand where the communities stand in terms of developmental status and the impact of welfare measures. This would help us to fine-tune welfare measures to help bring all the poor sections into the mainstream,” he said.

Pointing out that as the Finance Minister he had earmarked Rs. 23 crore in the State Budget 2005-06 for the caste census, he said he would now provide Rs. 117 crore for the proposed census as its scope has been extended. “The fact that the last caste survey was done way back in 1931 calls for a fresh survey. We do not even know the population size of different communities let alone their development status. The figures regarding community-wise population available in political circles are not correct as everybody tries to exaggerate their population size,” he said.

Mr. Siddaramaiah also announced that the government would take up construction of 100 post-matric hostels exclusively for girls from the oppressed communities in addition to those proposed in the budget.

Milk on all days

Referring to the scheme of providing 150 ml of milk to schoolchildren three days a week to fight malnutrition, the Chief Minister said the government had decided to extend this to all the six working days of the school from next year.

This would benefit 1.04 crore children, including 65 lakh children studying in Classes 1 to 10.

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