After cyclone Ockhi, an extensive coastal package of Rs 2,000 crore has been allocated in the budget. Rs 150 crore has been allocated for rehabilitation of families within 50 metres of the coastal area. Also, a satellite-based warning system will be set up at a cost of Rs 100 crore for coastal areas. Kerala Infrastructure Investment Fund Board funding will be given to the coastal hospitals and harbours too.
Kerala Infrastructure Investment Fund Board funds will also help contain the impact of returning migrants from the Middle East. KIIFB will raise further funds from the financial markets through general obligation bond, land bond and revenue bond, Isaac announced in his budget address. Rs 31 crore has been allocated for food safety measures. Selected ration shops will be converted to margin free shops under the scheme. Rs 2,500 crore has been allocated for Livelihood Inclusion and Financial Empowerment (LIFE) housing project. Flats at a cost of Rs 10 lakh and houses at a cost of Rs 5 lakh will be built under the LIFE project.
Through Kudumbashree, chicken farming will be done through all panchayats. One-day-old chicken will be supplied to farmers at a cost of Rs 30-35 per chick.
A major thrust was on health schemes, including more facilities for cancer patients, in the budget. Malabar cancer center in Thalassery will be elevated to the standard of RCC. An RCC standard cancer centre at Kochi will also be set up soon. Besides, an Oncology department will be set up in all medical colleges. Trauma care facility will be set up in all taluk hospitals.
A comprehensive health insurance will be offered to all in Kerala, the FM said, adding this will be done through inclusion of everyone to the various insurance schemes. Prevention, proper medical help and palliative help will be the three factors of healthcare project of Kerala. Uber-model ambulance services will be launched across the state, said FM.
Social security pension will be denied to those paying income tax or owning a house of more than 1,200 sq ft, or 2 acres of land, the FM said. On the eductaion front, Rs 1 crore has been allocated as renovation fund for schools with more than 500 students and Rs 12 crore for setting up centre of excellence at the Gender Park. Aid to special schools run by NGOs has been hiked to Rs 40 crore from Rs 13 crore.
Rs 50 crore has been sanctioned for endosulfan victims. Also, fund from Kasaragod package will be utilized for the benefit of the affected people.
For the welfare of the SC/ST community, the state government has set aside Rs 2,598 crore.
To revive the Khadi industry, Rs 19 crore has been allocated for khadi sector.
Stating that farmers in state were in severe crisis, the FM allocated Rs 10 crore to promote organic farming. Rs 13.5 crore has been set aside for pollution control measures. Pamba action plan will be revived. Measures will be taken to revive Kerala State Road Transport Corporation. Rs 3500 crore immediate loan sanctioned for KSRTC. KSRTC to be divided into 3 individual profit centres. The loan of Rs 3500 crore will be given by consortium of banks. It will save Rs 60 crore per month on interest payments on short-term loans. KSRTC wil buy 2000 new buses using KIIFB funds. Rs 1,459 crore allocated for building and repairing roads and bridges, Kerala FM. In a cheer for the liquor industry, Bevco has now been granted permission to sell foreign liquor too.
(Source: The Times Of India)