The Himachal Government is providing subsidies worth Rs. 316 crore to consumers in the hill State by offering discounted foodgrains and cheap electricity. This was stated by Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal during his election meetings on the last day campaigning for Wednesday's State assembly by-elections.

To counter rising inflation, the State is spending Rs. 150 crore a year towards the public distribution system and providing electricity subsidy of Rs. 166 crore to the consumers. Himachal Pradesh, he said, is trying to survive despite a step-motherly treatment meted out to it by the Centre.


Meanwhile, BJP spokesperson Ganesh Dutt maintained that Congress allegations of money distribution by a secretary of Transport Minister Mahender Singh and the recovery of liquor meant for distribution from the car of Chief Parliamentary Secretary Sukh Ram in Renuka constituency were false and politically motivated.