Special Correspondent

Jodhpur Development Authority to be constituted soon

The hike will also be applicable to retired employees

Narmada waters to reach Jalore and Sirohi districts soon

JODHPUR: Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje on Wednesday announced payment of an additional six per cent dearness allowance to the State Government employees with effect from January this year, resulting in an increase of DA to 35 per cent of basic pay. The hike will lead to an additional financial burden of Rs.490 crore a year on the State Government.

Addressing the Independence Day function at Old Stadium here, Ms. Raje said the hike would be applicable to both the serving and retired employees. She affirmed that Rajasthan was fast emerging as a model State with “new initiatives” of development and industrialisation being taken.

Ms. Raje unfurled the Tricolour at the crowded function held for the first time in Jodhpur and took salute of an impressive parade. The State-level Independence and Republic Day functions are being held at divisional headquarters since last year to enable the people in different parts of the State to participate in the festivities.

In other announcements in her address, Ms. Raje said the State Government would shortly constitute the Jodhpur Development Authority to ensure a planned growth of the city, while the Old Stadium would be renamed as Ummed Government Stadium and the pavilion would be named after the famous football player Shivdutt Bora.

Paying homage to the martyrs of the freedom movement in Marwar, the Chief Minister said the women of the region had also played a significant role in the independence struggle. She said the State Government was currently executing the biggest Annual Plan of the size of Rs.12,820 crore.

Referring to the recurrent droughts in Marwar, Ms. Raje said the people in the region would overcome paucity of water with the Narmada waters reaching Jalore and Sirohi districts in the near future. She said special efforts were also being made to popularise new agricultural techniques in the villages.

Ms. Raje made a special mention of the feeder reform programme in the State’s power sector in her address while pointing out that as many as 8,600 villages were getting electricity round the clock.

She said over 35,000 villages across the State would get power 24 hours daily by June next year.

The Chief Minister also highlighted the achievements of her Government in fields such as road network, medical and health services, education, tourism and industrialisation. .

Among the announcements made for Jodhpur division, Ms. Raje said over 1-lakh families living below poverty line would benefit from the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme, while the Rs.396-crore Jawai dam pipeline project would benefit 531 villages in Pali district. She also pointed out that the Barmer lift canal project would provide drinking water to a large number of villages in the region by December next year.