‘All farm loans to be waived off if JD(S) forms government’

BENGALURU: If JD(S) is elected to power with a clear majority, all farm loans will be waived by the state government, said JD(S) state president H D Kumaraswamy here on Wednesday. A separate budget for Dalits will also be presented, he said.

Addressing a SC/ST community rally at Palace Grounds here, Kumaraswamy also promised to provide a honorarium of Rs 7,000 for senior citizens aged over 70, new agricultural techniques that will remove dependency of farmers on farm loans, deputy CM post for a Dalit, among others.

Commenting on the recent incidents of communal strife and demand for a Lingayat separate religion, he said that both Congress and BJP were employing divisive tactics for electoral benefits. “BJP is using ‘Hindutva’ to come back to power. It is torching corners of the state for its benefit,” he said. He also criticised the Congress government for dividing the Lingayat community by supporting the agitation of a separate religion status. He said that most of the promises of the state government has remained mere slogans and benefits of schemes announced by the government were yet to reach the rural population. “Siddaramaiah says that he has fulfilled 150 of the 165 promises made in the election manifesto. Has economy of rural populations seen any improvement?” he asked.

He also demanded the state government to release a white paper outlining how the funds for various projects were used. While the state has announced thousands of crores for the welfare of Dalits, even the social welfare minister admits that less than 40 per cent of these funds have been utilised, he added.

Rs 600cr to firm for publicity: Deve Gowda

The state government, ahead of the Assembly elections next year, has issued a contract of `600 crore to a foreign firm to publicise its schemes, JD(S) leaders have alleged. Party national president H D Deve Gowda said tax-payers money is misused on this marketing exercise by the government. “Such an incident, where a foreign firm is approached for marketing the government, is unprecedented in the history of the state,” he said.Taking a dig at Chief Minister’s Nava Karnataka Nirmana Yatra, he said it is a state tour by ‘Dhongi (fake)Congressmen’, while Congress old-timers were launching their own Yatra from Mulbagal in Kolar.

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