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Key Insights From Karnataka’s 2024 Budget

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Karnataka CM Siddaramaiah concluded his 15th budget presentation in just over three hours on Friday, starting the address with references to the state’s cultural influences. Quoting a song from Dr. Rajkumar’s film “Bangarada Manushya” and a Vachana by Lingayat philosopher Aydakki Lakkamma, the budget announcement commenced at 10:15 am and concluded around 1:30 pm. This year’s budget outlay is ₹3.71 lakh crore.

Here are the key takeaways of Karnataka’s budget: 

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Anganwadi Development:

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah allocated ₹300 crore for the development of Anganwadi centers. Measures include organizing training workshops for 20,000 workers, providing 75,938 smartphones to enhance efficiency, allocating ₹200 crore for building construction, and offering gratuity benefits to Anganwadi workers.

Minority Welfare:

The budget addresses the needs of minorities, including specially abled individuals, gender minorities, and devadasis. Plans include distributing two-wheelers to 1,500 special persons, increasing financial assistance under the Maithi Yojana for gender minorities, and enhancing monthly payments to ex-devadasis from ₹1500 to ₹2000.

Focus on Women and Child Welfare:

The Siddaramaiah-led government earmarked substantial amounts for women and child welfare, allocating ₹86,423 crore and ₹54,617 crore, respectively. 

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SC/ST and Backward Classes Education:

A significant portion of the budget, ₹2,710 crore, is allocated for the construction of schools and hostels for Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribe, Backward Classes, and Minority students.

Welfare for SC/ST Community:

Siddaramaiah has allocated ₹39,121 crore for the welfare of the SC/ST community. The funds will be utilized for various developmental projects catering to the specific needs of these communities.

Revenue Deficit Budget:

Defending the decision to present a revenue deficit budget, Siddaramaiah highlighted an increased allocation for welfare programs, amounting to ₹1,20,373 crore. 

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Infrastructure Development in Bengaluru:

The budget includes provisions for Bengaluru’s infrastructure development, with ₹10 crore allocated for a destitute shelter and ₹150 crore for a mother and Child Hospital. 

Education Reforms:

Siddaramaiah emphasized education reforms by announcing the addition of Class 6 in schools and Class 8 in schools currently operating up to 7th standard. The student strength in each class will be increased from 25 to 40.

Wakf Properties and Minority Education:

A special focus on developing Wakf properties with a ₹100 crore allocation is highlighted. Additionally, educational initiatives for minorities include the establishment of 50 Morarji Desai Residential Schools, 100 Post-matric boys/girl’s hostels, and 100 new Maulana Azad Schools.

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Source: Micoope

Pilgrimage and Community Development:

The budget allocates funds for the development of pilgrimage destinations, with Christians receiving the highest allocation of ₹200 crore. Additionally, initiatives for the translation of Tripitakas into Kannada and financial empowerment schemes for the Sikligar community reflect the government’s commitment to diverse communities.

Cauvery Phase-5 Project:

The Karnataka government allocated ₹5,550 crore for the Cauvery Phase-5 project. Operationalized by the Bengaluru Water Supply and Sewerage Board in May 2024, this project boasts a capacity of 775 MLD, aiming to provide 110 liters of drinking water daily to 12 lakh people.

Upgrading Sewage Treatment Infrastructure: 

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah emphasizes the importance of sewage treatment infrastructure, revealing plans to upgrade seven sewage treatment plants at a cost of ₹441 crore. Simultaneously, a phase-II drinking water supply scheme for 110 villages within the BBMP limits is set to be implemented with an allocated budget of ₹200 crore.

Cauvery Stage 5 project put on fast track

Source: Indian Express

Revolutionizing Traffic Control:

Addressing traffic congestion in Bengaluru, the government, in collaboration with Japan, plans to install the Area Traffic Signal Control System at 28 major junctions. Utilizing state-of-the-art technology, this initiative is projected to reduce vehicle density at traffic signals by 30% and average delay by 13%.

Namma Metro Phase-3: 

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah allocated ₹15,611 crore for Namma Metro Phase-3. Awaiting approval from the Central Government, this initiative extends the metro network by 44 km, supplementing the existing 74 km. Additionally, the Bengaluru Metropolitan Transport Corporation’s fleet will witness a substantial boost with the addition of 1,334 new electric buses and 820 diesel buses.

Skydeck and Metro Expansion: 

The government announces plans for a 250-meter high Skydeck designed by internationally renowned architects. Simultaneously, the extension of 44 km to the Namma Metro Rail project is set to be completed by March 2025, catering to over eight lakh people daily.

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