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K’taka’s Financial Health Stable Despite Guarantee Schemes: CM Siddaramaiah

Siddaramaiah (6)

Bengaluru: Chief Minister Siddaramaiah assured that Karnataka’s financial stability remains intact despite the continuation of Congress’ flagship ‘guarantee’ schemes. This statement was a direct response to Opposition leader R Ashoka’s criticism, who claimed the schemes had not garnered the desired votes for Congress in the Lok Sabha polls and could jeopardize state finances.

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“Your wish that the state should become bankrupt because of the guarantees will not be fulfilled. The guarantee schemes will continue and the state’s financial position is secure. The government hasn’t reached the plight of having to borrow loans to pay salaries,” Siddaramaiah declared. He added, “Let me know if you’re facing trouble in getting your salary. I’ll try to fix that.”

In 2023-24, the Siddaramaiah-led Congress government allocated over Rs 36,000 crore to these five ‘guarantee’ schemes, and for the current fiscal year, a substantial Rs 52,009 crore has been earmarked.

Siddaramaiah stated that the ‘guarantee’ schemes were not politically motivated. “It is our commitment and concern towards the people of the state. We introduced the guarantees to help people as they had borne the brunt of the union government’s maladministration,” he stated.

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Challenging Ashoka, Siddaramaiah questioned, “Why do you hate the beneficiaries – the poor, women, and youth?” He continued, defending the schemes’ impact and asserting that the state’s citizens, not political opponents, supported the Congress.

On the Lok Sabha poll results, Siddaramaiah expressed dissatisfaction with Congress securing only nine out of 28 seats in Karnataka but highlighted the party’s success despite BJP’s efforts. “Despite having fallen at the feet of JD(S), the BJP’s tally fell from 26 seats to 17. You couldn’t prevent Congress from winning nine seats, up from one,” he pointed out.

In response, Ashoka cited statements from Congress leaders and lawmakers critical of the guarantees, asserting that dissatisfaction and doubts about the schemes exist within Congress itself. “Guarantees have lost. Guarantees didn’t translate into votes. Guarantees need to be reviewed. These aren’t my statements. These are your lawmakers,” Ashoka tweeted, highlighting the internal discontent regarding the schemes.

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