Special Correspondent

‘It is not a State Budget, but one for Shimoga, Bellary and Bangalore'

Gulbarga: Members of the Hyderabad Karnataka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (HKCCI) have expressed their disappointment over the non-inclusion of any special package for the overall development of the backward Hyderabad Karnataka region in the State Budget for the year 2010-11 presented by Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa in the State Assembly on Friday.

President of the HKCCI Umakant Nigudgi and Secretary Gopalkrishna Raghoji, in a statement issued here on Friday, said it was unfortunate that no definite plan and programmes had been announced in the Budget proposal for completion of the pending irrigation projects and to develop infrastructure.

Mr. Nigudgi and Mr. Raghoji said most of the proposals would benefit only Shimoga, Bellary and Bangalore and “This is a budget for the people of Shimoga, Bellary and Bangalore and not for the entire State”. The allocation of Rs. 53 lakh for the Hyderabad Karnataka Development Board was far less than the expected Rs. 100 crore.

However, they said in the release that they welcomed other development measures announced in the Budget. An allocation of Rs. 2,580 crore for the implementation of the recommendations of the Nanjundappa Committee report and extension of the one-time settlement scheme for the small industries up to December 2010 by providing Rs. 25 crore for it will go a long way in helping the small-scale industries recover from recession effect, they added.

They also welcomed the decision of the Government to allocate Rs. 25 crore for development of infrastructure in Yadgir district and the decision to construct Gulbarga airport. Mr. Nigudgi and Mr. Raghoji said that it was good that the Government had extended farm loans at 3 per cent interest rate. The other decisions that the HKCCI welcomed include: proposal to establish a synthetic track in the Chandrasekhar Patil Stadium in Gulbarga City at a cost of Rs. 5 crore; extension of tax holiday scheme for foodgrains and pulses; and the increase the audit limit from Rs. 40 lakh to Rs. 60 lakh turnover.

However the increase of VAT from 4 to 5 per cent, 12.5 to 13.5 per cent, and 15 per cent on a few goods would fuel the inflation and affect the common man, the release added.