Karnataka budget session to begin on February 10, but Assembly elections cast shadow on duration

The business advisory committee of the legislature will decide on the duration of the session based on the views of the legislators as most of them would be pre-occupied with poll-related work

January 20, 2023 05:00 pm | Updated 05:35 pm IST - BENGALURU

A file photo of the Karnataka Assembly. Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister J. C. Madhuswamy said the Governor would address a joint session of the State legislature on February 10 as this is the first session of the year.

A file photo of the Karnataka Assembly. Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister J. C. Madhuswamy said the Governor would address a joint session of the State legislature on February 10 as this is the first session of the year. | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

The budget session of the Karnataka legislature will begin on February 10 with an address by Governor Thaawar Chand Gehlot and the State budget would be presented by Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai on February 17.

A decision to this effect was taken at a meeting of the State Cabinet on January 20.

Briefing mediapersons after the Cabinet meeting, Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister J. C. Madhuswamy said the Governor would address a joint session of the State legislature on February 10 as this is the first session of the year.

The Minister said the Cabinet was thinking of holding the budget session for 15 days. However, the business advisory committee of the legislature will decide on the duration of the session based on the views of the legislators as most of them would be pre-occupied with poll-related work, he said.

A large number of legislators, cutting across political affiliations, had favoured early winding up of the State legislature session in Belagavi in December 2022 citing preparations for the Assembly polls, which are expected to be held in March or April.

Other decisions of Karnataka Cabinet

The Cabinet decided to extend the benefit of the scheme for an one-time-settlement (OTS) of dues pending towards the Karnataka State Finance Corporation (KSFC) to the loans given by the corporation after 2003 too.

Earlier, such a benefit had been given to only those who had borrowed till October 31, 2003, the Minister pointed out. “We have decided to extend such a benefit as OTS is being provided by various banks of late. However, the concessions to be given this time will not match what was provided earlier,” said the Minister.

The KSFC has to get dues to the extent of ₹345 crore from various defaulters. This includes principal amount of ₹127.40 crore and interest amount of ₹217.60 crore, Mr. Madhuswamy said.

The Cabinet decided to provide a share capital of ₹54.60 crore to the KSFC so that it could perform better.

The Cabinet gave permission to a proposal to increase the cess being collected by sugar factories. The cess, which is charged in accordance with the total quantum of sugarcane crushed by the factories, had not been revised for over 30 years, the Minister said. The increase in cess amount would be passed on to the S. Nijalingappa Sugar Research Institute, which was set up by the State government in Belagavi to conduct research into sugarcane development and issues related to sugar production.

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