The Congress in Karnataka is gearing up for a protest in New Delhi on February 7 to voice its dissatisfaction with the Union government's allocation of grants to the state. Deputy Chief Minister DK Shivakumar said that Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, along with Cabinet ministers, MLAs, and MLCs, will participate in the protest.
In an effort to garner broader support, Shivakumar has invited leaders from opposition parties in the state, including the BJP and Janata Dal (Secular), to join the protest.
Shivakumar alleged that BJP state leaders made no efforts in securing drought relief funds and criticised them for not engaging with the BJP led union government. “The state BJP leaders have not made any efforts to hold a meeting with the BJP government in the Union to seek drought relief funds for the State which is reeling under severe drought. Instead, they are busy criticising the State government,” he said.
Shivakumar said that the Congress government under Siddaramaiah government had deposited Rs 2,000 into the accounts of drought-affected farmers and taken measures to address drinking water issues in affected areas. The Union hasn’t done anything about it. The Union announced Rs 5,300 crore for irrigation projects in Karnataka but they haven’t released any funds. The Union hasn’t done anything about the metro either,” he said.
"The state has lost a revenue of about Rs 62,000 crore in the last five years due to this. The size of the Union budget which was Rs 24.5 lakh crore in 2018-19 has doubled in 2023-24 to Rs 45 lakh crores but the state hasn’t benefited from it. Though the budget size has doubled, grants for Karnataka have only gone up a little from Rs 46,000 crores in 2018-19 to Rs 50,000 in 2022-23,” he added.