Next, dhoti, saree Bhagya for BPL families on the cards

BENGALURU: More freebies are in the pipeline for poor people in the state as the Siddaramaiah government prepares to face the electorate this summer. Over one crore Below Poverty Line (BPL) families in the state could get Dhoti and Saree Bhagya soon if the Textiles ministry has its way.

Textile Minister Rudrappa Lamani is set to make a presentation on the proposed scheme during the pre-budget meeting of the ministry to be chaired by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on January 29.

“We have prepared the draft programme intended to distribute a pair of dhoti and shirt pieces for men and a pair of saree and blouse pieces for women of BPL families annually under the scheme which we intend to name as ‘Indira Vasthra Bhagya’ annually,” Rudrappa Lamani told The New Indian Express.

Siddaramaiah government seemingly plans to cash in on the popularity of late Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in the forthcoming election. It has already implemented Indira Canteen scheme to provide nutritious meal at low cost, and it is now preparing to implement ‘Indira Sarige’ to provide subsidised commuting in BMTC buses.

“I am confident of convincing the Chief Minister to announce the free dhoti and saree scheme in his forthcoming budget to be presented on February 16. It would cost about `550 crore annually to implement the scheme,” Lamani said.

“Apart from wooing the over one crore BPL families in the state, the scheme would also benefit thousands of families in the weavers’ community as the clothes would be procured from the poor power loom weavers in the state,” the Minister said.

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