Tamil Nadu 2016

DMK manifesto: Separate farming budget, Ministry for irrigation

The DMK manifesto has given a thrust to the agriculture sector, promising a slew of measures including an increase in the minimum support price for paddy to Rs. 2,000 per quintal (to be increased to Rs. 2,500 later), and subsidy for all types of paddy irrespective of their period of introduction.

DMK leader M. Karunanidhi said his government would have a separate budget for agriculture and a ministry for irrigation. Crop loans of small and micro farmers would also be waived.

The manifesto said a new law would be passed to give additional 50 days under the Mahatma Gandhi Rural Employment Guarantee Act, and under the law, workers would be used for agricultural work during the crop seasons.

The government will distribute free dhoti and saree and Rs. 500 as Pongal gift to micro farmers and agriculture workers.

The agriculture department will have a separate department for organic farming and a research centre will be set up in the name of late Ko. Nammalwar. Every panchayat union will have a grain storage facility.

“A special industrial estate will be established for making agricultural equipment, and farmers cultivating millets and pulses in dry and waste lands will get assistance,” the manifesto said.

Stand on reservation

The DMK will urge the Centre to follow 27 per cent reservation in all jobs in central services and not to follow the percentage fixed by various states.

While making it clear that it was not for creamy layer in OBC reservation, the DMK said it would urge the Centre to raise the ceiling of annual income from Rs. 6 lakh to Rs. 15 lakh as long as the creamy layer concept continued.

The manifesto also promised to waive interest and penal interest as one-time relief to those who could not repay housing loan obtained from co-operative societies for more than 10 years and were facing recovery proceedings.

Besides constituting a high-level committee to consider the demand of the people who were offering to purchase temple land, the DMK said it would increase the wages and pension of priests in village temples.

It also promised to permit all religious institutions to set up their places of worship in places owned by them under Article 25 of the Constitution. Reiterating that it would implement the Sethusamudram project, the DMK urged the Centre to find a permanent solution to the killing and detention of Tamil fishermen by the Sri Lankan Navy.

Promising re-introduction of pension scheme for all transport workers, the manifesto said it would take steps to increase maternity leave of women in government employment to nine months.

For senior citizens over 60 years, free travel concession in ordinary government buses will be provided.

Old age pension will also be increased to Rs. 1,300 from Rs. 1,000 now.

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Printable version | Mar 4, 2021 5:15:34 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/elections/tamilnadu2016/dmk-manifesto-separate-farming-budget-ministry-for-irrigation/article8458384.ece

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