COVID Curfew: Siddharamaiah demands special package for working class
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COVID Curfew: Siddharamaiah demands special package for working class

May 4, 2021

Bengaluru: Opposition Leader Siddharamaiah has urged the Government to announce a special package for the working class, which is deeply distressed by loss of jobs and income due to COVID Curfew.

In a letter written to Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa, Siddharamaiah, who is also a former Chief Minister, said that most migrant workers in the State capital are from North Karnataka, who have come in search of jobs and livelihood. But the COVID Curfew has badly affected their livelihood and the Government must come to their rescue by compensating  them, he said.

Pointing out that there were 1.30 crore BPL families in the State, Siddharamaiah said that the State also has 1.50 crore labourers working in unorganised sector. 

Urging the Government to announce a financial assistance of Rs. 10,000 per month to each of the poor and distressed families, he said farmers form a majority of the State’s population and the Government should announce a financial package to farmers too, as most of them belong to BPL families.

Claiming that the Government has waived off taxes totalling Rs. 10.5 lakh crore of Corporate companies, Siddharamaiah in his letter maintained that in such a scenario, a financial package will not be a burden on the Government. He also wanted the Government to announce interest-free loans to farmers, as such a move will help in boosting the State’s economy.

Noting that the return migration to villages caused by the pandemic has stressed the agriculture sector, he said that the Government can come to the help of the farming community by reducing the prices of fertilisers, farm equipment and other agricultural inputs.

Strongly condemning the steep hike in the price of fertilisers, Siddharamaiah urged the CM to distribute food packets and food kits to every poor family as being done in Kerala. 

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Suggesting to provide free power to MSME, small-scale  and home industries as the State is surplus in power generation, he wanted the Government to announce incentives for such industries which generate jobs. Stressing on the need to boost exports, he said that export duties must be withdrawn and Import duties must be lessened.

Referring to school fees, Siddharamaiah alleged that there are numerous complaints about private schools demanding payment of fees in full. Urging the Government to immediately address the school fee row, he said that the Government should order reduction of at least 50 percent of the fees as parents of children are finding it extremely difficult to get their students admitted in schools, due to loss of income.

Dwelling on the issue of the driver fraternity, the Opposition Leader said that most of  passenger and goods transport vehicles went off the roads due to COVID induced lockdown last year. 

Asserting that the lives of taxi, auto, maxi-cab drivers and owners have come to the streets due to loss of income, he said that many drivers have ended their lives, due to deep financial crisis. He urged the CM to come to the rescue of lakhs of driver families by announcing a fresh financial package covering all classes of drivers. He also wanted the Government to waive off vehicles taxes and defer loan repayment of  public transport vehicles. 

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