Himachal Pradesh budget: State to implement EWS quota, reduce power tariff for irrigation

Jai Ram Thakur in his budget speech said that the state government will provide Rs 11,000 as Varshik Loktantra Prahari Samman to those who had been arrested under MISA (Maintenance of Internal Security Act). (Express Photo by Kamleshwar Singh)

The Himachal Pradesh government Saturday presented the state budget for the fiscal year 2019-20 in the assembly. In his budget speech, Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur said his state government will implement 10 per cent quota for economically weaker sections (EWS) of general category. Earlier this year, the Centre had notified EWS reservation in government jobs.

In a bid to woo the farming community ahead of the general elections, CM Thakur said his government will reduce power tariff from 75 paise per unit to 50 paise per unit for irrigation. Also, a 50 per cent subsidy will be given to farmers for installing solar fencing in order to save their crops from monkeys.

Thakur who also holds the finance portfolio further said that the state government will provide Rs 11,000 as Varshik Loktantra Prahari Samman to those who had been arrested under MISA (Maintenance of Internal Security Act). The provisions under MISA were used between 1975 and 1977 by the then Congress government to arrest political prisoners who revolted against the emergency.

Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur presented his second budget today after taking the oath of office in 2017. The budget assembly session began on February 4 and will end on February 18.