August 20, 2021 1:19:55 am
In an abrupt end to the Monsoon Session, the UP Legislative Assembly was adjourned sine die on Thursday after the House passed the supplementary budget of Rs 7,301.52 crore tabled by the BJP government to meet the additional expenditure. The Monsoon Session, which was scheduled to continue till August 24, functioned for only three days.
While replying to a debate on the supplementary budget, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath hit out at the Opposition for their criticism of his government over the law and order situation, saying “those shamelessly supporting the Taliban are today talking about welfare of women”.
“There are some who are supporting the Taliban. The kind of cruelty being done by the Taliban against women and children in Afghanistan is known, but some people are shamelessly supporting the Taliban. They want to Talibanise India too… Such people are talking about women welfare. All such faces should be exposed,” the CM said.
In a speech that lasted for over an hour, Adityanath shared the details of Rs 3,000 crore funds set aside for “employment” in the supplementary budget. The CM said that the money will be used to digitally equip one crore students pursuing graduation, post-graduation, technical education and diploma courses by giving them tablets or smartphones.
“One crore youth who are pursuing diploma, technical education, graduation and post-graduation courses will be given tablets and smartphones, and as per need, efforts will also be made to provide them with free digital access,” the CM said.
He said that his government was mulling over giving an allowance to the youth for appearing for at least three competitive examinations. “The youths of the state will now say with pride that they hail from UP… This did not happen during the (previous) Samajwadi Party rule, and the youth would rather say that he is from Delhi. Earlier, there was no investment in the state, false cases were registered against the youth, but today UP is a riot-free state,” the CM claimed.
He said that the government would construct houses for the poor by “bulldozing the houses of mafias built on encroached land”. “This is social justice,” he added.
Stating properties “worth Rs 1,500 crore” of gangsters and land mafias have been confiscated and demolished by his government, the CM said those who had given protection to dreaded criminals will also have to face bulldozer.
Rejecting the Opposition’s charge of mismanagement during the second wave of Covid-19, the chief minister claimed that UP, despite being the most populous state, reported the lowest positivity rate and highest recovery rate. “Corona kaal ne saabit kiya ki UP mein dum hai (The Covid pandemic has proved that UP has the strength),” he added. Pointing towards the Opposition benches, he said that how would they know the ground reality when most of them have been in“home isolation” during the pandemic.
Earlier in the debate, Congress Legislature Party leader Aradhna Misha had sought protection of women and support for girls who lost an earning member in the family. She also demanded that a provision should have been made in the budget for those families, who have lost their loved ones from Covid-19.
Speaking about his government’s push to promote religious tourism in the state, Adityanath said, “In spiritual tourism, heritage tourism and eco-tourism, UP’s role has been that of a leading state, but no attention was paid to this earlier. Previous leaders built memorials in their own honour. Nobody even looked towards Ayodhya, and today everybody is claiming that Lord Ram belongs to them as well.”
“Earlier, Ram, Krishna and Shankar (Hindu Gods) were considered communal. Now, when they have realised that the majority in society will not forget them, they are prostrating in reverence and saying that they too are devotees of Lord Ram, Lord Krishna and Lord Shankar,” the CM said, calling it a “victory of ideology”.
Hitting out at the Leader of the Opposition, Ram Govind Chaudhary, for alleging “misuse of funds in the name of cattle protection”, the chief minister said that no one becomes “Gau Bhakt” just by speaking about it.
Earlier in the debate, Opposition leaders, including SP’s Ram Govind Chaudhary and BSP Legislature Party leader Shah Alam, said there was no need for a supplementary budget as the government was far behind in utilising the major chunk of the funds set aside in the main budget.
To this, Adityanath said that the previous governments’ approach was “narrow-minded” and that is why their budget size was also small, close to just Rs 2.5 lakh crore. “After I came to power, the budget size has been increased steadily and is now about Rs 6 lakh crore. “Big thinking leads to bigger works and therefore the budget is also big,” the CM said.
Later, Chaudhary termed the CM’s reply “ubau (boring)” and “far from reality”.
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