Diya tables budget: Focus on women, Hindutva

The budget also addresses the concerns of Rajasthan youth with some significant initiatives.
Diya tables budget: Focus on women, Hindutva

JAIPUR: With Finance Minister Diya Kumari making several major announcements,the Bhajan Lal government of Rajasthan presented its first full budget on Wednesday. The budget particularly focuses on women, youth, and farmers, and includes a special effort to bolster BJP’s Hindutva outreach.

One of the most notable initiatives for women is the “Lakhpati Didi Yojana,” designed to financially empower women across the state. The finance minister announced that 15 lakh women in Rajasthan will become “Lakhpati Didi” under this scheme which will provide eligible women with interest-free loans up to Rs 5 lakh to start their own businesses and improve their economic condition.

The budget also addresses the concerns of Rajasthan youth with some significant initiatives. A commitment was made to create 4 lakh new jobs over the next five years as part of a broader strategy to combat unemployment and provide more opportunities for young people. Additionally, a new youth policy will be introduced, including programs for new internship opportunities and skill development training for over 1.5 lakh youth, aiming to equip them with the necessary skills and experience for the job market.

In a nod to cultural heritage and Hindutva, the budget allocates large funds for the development of religious sites. Kumari announced that `100 crore will be dedicated to the development of Khatu Shyam Ji, one of the most popular Krishna temples in the state. Plans are also in place to construct the Khatushyam Corridor, modeled after the Kashi Vishwanath Corridor, to enhance the infrastructure and facilities around this important pilgrimage site. Development work costing crores will also be carried out at Jeenmata and Shakambari temples in Sikar, with 600 other temples being renovated for festivals. A total of Rs 13 crore will be spent on these renovations.

For farmers, Diya Kumari stated that a Detailed Project Report (DPR) will be prepared at a cost of Rs 60 crore to bring Yamuna water from Haryana to Rajasthan through an underground pipeline, ensuring year-round water availability in Sikar, Churu, and Jhunjhunu districts.

Initiative for Women

  • "Lakhpati Didi Yojana": Aimed at financially empowering women.

  • Target: 15 lakh women to become "Lakhpati Didi."

  • Support: Interest-free loans of `1 to 5 lakh for eligible women to start businesses.

Youth Initiatives

  • Job Creation: 4 lakh new jobs over the next five years.

  • Youth Policy: Introduction of new programs for internships and skill development training for over 1.5 lakh youth.

Cultural Heritage and Hindutva

  • Funds Allocation: Rs 100 crore for the development of Khatu Shyam Ji.

  • Khatushyam Corridor: Modeled after the Kashi Vishwanath Corridor to enhance pilgrimage site infrastructure.

  • Temple Development: Renovations for Jeenmata and Shakambhari temples, and 600 other temples, with Rs 13 crore allocated for festivals.

Support for Farmers

  • Water Project: Rs 60 crore for a Detailed Project Report (DPR)

    to bring Yamuna water to Rajasthan via an underground pipeline.

  • Sprinkler Irrigation: Less than Rs 200 crore for facilities in 33,000 hectares of the Chaudhary Kumbharam Arya Lift Canal area.

  • Market Expansion: Rasidpura Mandi in Sikar to be expanded.

VAT on Fuel

  • No Reduction Announced: Expectations for VAT reduction on petrol and diesel were unmet.

  • Current Situation: Rajasthan charges higher VAT on petrol and diesel compared to other states, making fuel cheaper by Rs 16 for petrol and Rs 11 for diesel in other states.

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