Assam budget proposes Rs 1L to each Covid victim’s family, smartphones for students | Guwahati News


GUWAHATI: Assam’s first woman finance minister Ajanta Neog on Friday tabled a Rs 566.20-crore deficit budget in the assembly with a range of bold initiatives like financial help of Rs 1 lakh to each family that has lost their members to Covid-19 and smartphones to about eight lakh Class IX and X students of government schools to bridge the digital divide created by the pandemic.
“The financial assistance to Covid-hit families, which is the first-of-its-kind in the country, proves our firm resolve to be with our people during these difficult times. The scheme will immediately cost the exchequer around Rs 40 crore,” Neog said.
Till July 13, 4,888 Covid deaths have been reported in Assam.
The budget proposed to start the process of recruitment of one lakh educated youths of the state in the government sector.
“We will have to electrify 48,805 Anganwadi centres and 13,656 primary schools now. An amount of Rs 144 crore has been allotted for the purpose,” Neog said.
In order to bring the leftout downtrodden people within the fold of food security,the government announced a new scheme namely “Anna Nischito Asoni”. Under the scheme, the government will identify and select all such categories of people left out from the National Food Security Act, 2013 living in urban areas. “We will provide free cooked meals to all such groups in partnership with reputed voluntary societies,” she added.
The budget also proposed piped water supply schemes to cover all 805 tea gardens in the state within a year. This initiative will benefit more than 2,69,648 families. “In due course, we will also provide piped gas supply to tea garden households, starting with the upper Assam districts first,” Neog said.
The state government also proposed to constitute an agriculture commission under a scientist of international repute to focus on issues related to agriculture, animal husbandry and dairy sector in Assam. She said the commission will study and suggest measures for achieving self-sufficiency in the field of agriculture, milk, egg and pork production, identify constraints and devise a roadmap to achieve the goals in five years.
The budget proposed to introduce the use of sex-sorted semen for the benefit of dairy farmers. It would control the birth of scrub bulls as 80 to 90% of all births would be female calves. “Female births shall help in meeting the ever increasing demand for milk in the state,” Neog added.
Prepared in the testing times of Covid, Neog told the House that this year’s budget is not merely a reflection of annual earnings and expenditure, but a vision document for the government’s next five year’s journey.
To facilitate good governance, creation of a new district of Tamulpur to further improve economic activity and for better administrative control has been proposed. To address the issue of encroachment in the hills in Guwahati, the government will identify suitable land and shift the landless encroachers, who are otherwise eligible, to such land on priority. A mechanism will be developed for 24X7 monitoring of the hills using drones.
The government also proposed to establish a state university in Karbi Anglong and establish new wildlife safari and rescue center at Silchar and Dibrugarh. Besides extending financial packages to all reputed institutions which are more than 100 years old, the government will extend financial support to Sainik School Goalpara for its upkeep.





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