Finance Minister K.M. Mani allocated Rs. 150 crore for taking up infrastructure development for the Vizhinjam International Transshipment Terminal in his revised Budget for the current year.
Presenting the Budget in the Assembly, the Minister announced allocations for the Kannur airport project (Rs. 30 crore) and Kochi Metro Rail Project (Rs. 25 crore) also. Rs. 10 crore would be earmarked for development of basic infrastructure for the Smart City project. Rs. 5 crore each was set apart for the Hill Area Development Authority and hill highway.
Mr. Mani said that Rs. 2 crore would be allocated for the development of the State highway from Ernakulam to Sabarimala. Comprehensive works would be taken up for reducing pollution at Sabarimala and Pamba River including a ‘zero waste’ project. A development authority would be formed for Bharanaganam (pilgrim centre) in Kottayam district.
He said that the Budget would further earmark Rs. 200 crore for roads and bridges. The condition of 1000 km of roads would be improved.
Emphasis would thus be given for development of basic infrastructure.
The Minister also announced a pension scheme for small and marginal farmers. The scheme would provide for a monthly pension of Rs. 300.
Some of the highlights of the Budget: New medical college in Idukki, Pathanamthitta, Malappuram and Kasaragod districtsHealth insurance to cover 52 lakh familiesRs. 1 crore for Malayalam University at TirurSubsidy on cattlefeed to be doubledErumeli to be upgraded as townshipHealth and educational hub at PanakkadDaily draws for Kerala State Lotteries.Interest concession for farmers making timely repayments of loansCashew plantations exempted from provisions of Land Reforms ActChange of crops to be permitted in plantationsContract farming through krishi bhavansPackage for arecanut farmersVaccination for all cattleKSFE to provide educational loans at bank ratesProjects for capital city developmentEntrepreneurship development mission to promote 50000 enterprises and creation of one lakh job opportunities with total outlay 2000 croreMeenachil project to be revivedRoad from Nedumbassery to SabarimalaMobility hub at Kottayam.Kottayam-Kumarakom- Cherthala tourist high wayEnergy marts to be opened to promote energy conservationState shelter fund to build one lakh houses a yearRing roads in Varakala, Kottayam, Pala, Manbram and MancheriRs. 5 crore for Hill Area Development AuthorityMaster plan for transport development in the StateSpecial purpose vehicle for development of VarkalaValluvanad Development Authority in Malappurm districtErumeli to be upgraded as townshipRevenue towers at Harippad and KattappanaConvention Centre at AruvikkaraAgriculture Market at Poovachal in Thiruvananthapuram districtComprehensive crop insurance planRs. 5 crorer for Coastal Development AuthorityEducational and Health hub at PanakkadSuper specialty hospital to be set up at Thalappadi Biomedial Research InstituteModern medical centre in Wayanad on the lines of SCT Institute ofMedical Sciences in ThiruvananthapuramAgriculture Workers pension to be hiked to Rs. 400.Project to free Kerala from waste materialsFolklore village to be set up in Vellavoor panchayatPerformance monitoring and evaluations scheme to keep tab on bureaucracyKerala Civil Service Institute to be set up for training