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Karnataka CM announces Covid-19 relief package worth Rs 1,250 cr; Rs 3,000 each to auto, taxi drivers

An amount of Rs 3,000 each will be given for auto and taxi drivers and construction workers; Rs 2,000 each for workers in the unorganised sector and Rs 10,000 per hectare for farmers engaged in floriculture works

Karnataka CM BS Yediyurappa Karnataka CM BS Yediyurappa

Karnataka CM BS Yediyurappa on Wednesday announced COVID-19 relief package worth Rs 1,250 crore for the segments badly hit by second wave of Covid-19 pandemic. Karnataka is one of the worst affected states due to Covid-19.

As part of the relief package, an amount of Rs 3,000 each will be given to auto and taxi drivers and construction workers; Rs 2,000 to workers in the unorganised sector and Rs 10,000 per hectare to farmers engaged in floriculture works. Around 69,000 farmers may benefit from the decision and will cost the government Rs 69 crore.

Overall, about 2.10 lakh auto, registered taxi and maxi cab drivers will benefit from the move. The scheme announced for labourers, under which Rs 3,000 each will be given to labourers who have registered with Karnataka Building And Other Construction Workers Welfare Board will cost the exchequer Rs 494 crore.

Unorganised sector workers like barbers, washermen, tailor, porters, ragpickers, potters, goldsmiths, mechanics, blacksmith, household workers, cobblers, among others, will get Rs 3,000 each, thereby benefiting 3.04 lakh of them. The scheme will cost Rs 60.89 crore.

Also read: 3,000 COVID-19 patients 'missing' in Bengaluru: Karnataka minister

Roadside vendors registered under Aatma Nirbhar package will get Rs 2,000 each, benefitting about 2.20 lakh people. The scheme will cost Rs 44 crore. Also artists and art teams will be given Rs 3,000 each, benefiting 16,095 beneficiaries and will cost Rs 4.82 crore, he further added, while listing out several other announcements.

The Karnataka CM also said the decision on extending beyond May 24 will be taken soon. "Our government had given financial packages to various sectors during the COVID first wave. Despite that, as the current restrictions have affected the livelihood of those with unorganised sector and farmers, to mitigate its impact we are announcing a relief programme of more than Rs 1,250 crore," Yediyurappa said.

He said Karnataka is facing a financial crunch but considering the hardships faced by people, it's necessary to lend a helping hand. "We have done the best we can within the current financial limitations, and will consider if any further needs to be done in the future," he said, reported PTI.

Karnataka is currently under complete lockdown till May 24 as the COVID cases continue to spike in the southern state. Several ministers in the Yediyurappa government have sought extension of the lockdown in the state.

Also read: Karnataka mulls COVID lockdown extension; no decision yet

With PTI inputs