Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa today refuted the allegations of the Opposition parties that the State finances were in a total mess and that the Government was using the funds released by the Centre for payment of salaries to government employees.
Terming the allegations as baseless, Mr. Yeddyurappa told presspersons that the State’s finances were sound and revenue mobilisation from all the departments were very good when compared to the previous year’s collection. The plan targets were also being achieved as proposed.
A visibly perturbed Chief Minister said that he would come out with a detailed picture of the financial situation of the State, with the facts and figures, on Tuesday in Bangalore, to clear doubts in the minds of the general public. “The leaders of the Opposition parties who had kept quiet inside the Assembly after the Government placed the facts about the financial situation on the floor of the House in the last session, were making noise now,” he said. “The 13th Finance Commission and the Reserve Bank of India’s Governor had given open compliments and expressed their happiness over the financial situation in the State and the handling of the finances by the Government.”
Referring to the relief and rehabilitation programmes taken up in the flood and rain affected areas in the State, Mr. Yeddyurappa said that the Government had so far spent more than Rs. 2,024 crore. Of this, only Rs. 1,465 crore was released by the Centre, which included the Rs. 1,000 crore sanctioned by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh immediately after visiting the flood-hit areas. “We had gone ahead in spending from the State funds to provide relief to the people without waiting for the Central funds,” he said.
He added that despite the recession and resultant economic slowdown, the State Government had not downsized its spending on welfare programmes. He said as many as 1.32 lakh people had benefitted from the various welfare programmes launched by the Government in the past 18 months, after the Bharatiya Janata Party took charge.
The Chief Minister said in the Sandhya Suraksha, Old Age Pension and Widow pension schemes, 16 lakh new beneficiaries have been added due to the measures taken by the Government by liberally extending the programmes to all the eligible people. “Before the BJP Government came to power, there were 19 lakh beneficiaries enjoying the benefits of these programmes and now there are around 35.4 lakh beneficiaries,” he said. Mr. Yeddyurappa said that the Government was spending Rs. 1,400 crore every year for these programmes.
Tourism Minister G. Janardhan Reddy, Information Minister Katta Subramanya Naidu, Health and Family Welfare Minister Sriramulu, Animal Husbandry Minister Revu Naik Belamgi, Chairman of the High Power Committee for the Implementation of the recommendations of the Nanjundappa Committee Shashil G. Namoshi, MLC, were among others who present.