Siddaramaiah takes charge as K'taka CM, unveils Rs 4,409.81 crore bonanza for poor

SiddaramaiahChief Minister Siddaramaiah at Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru on Monday. (PTI)

Ressurecting the Congress rule in Karnataka after seven years, Siddaramaiah today took over as Chief Minister, unveiling a Rs 4,409.81 crore bonanza for the poor, SCs, STs, OBCs and minorities in his maiden act. Related: From die-hard anti-Congressman to Cong CM

The 64-year-old backward class leader was sworn in by Governor H R Bhardwaj amid fanfare with thousands of his supporters in attendance at the ceremony held in the jam-packed Kanteerava Stadium, instead of the portals of state legislature building (Vidhana Soudha), state secretariat, or Raj Bhavan.

Sporting white silk dhoti and shirt, Siddaramaiah, a self-declared atheist, was sworn in alone and he took the oath in the name of 'Truth'.

Thereafter, Siddaramaiah went into the action mode to implement the Congress poll manifesto, chairing his maiden Cabinet meeting with only him in attendance as the list of Ministers is yet to be finalised.

He announced that 30 kg of rice at Re 1 a month would be provided from June, benefitting 98.17 lakh people in the below poverty line category, that would cost th state exchequer Rs 460 crore extra annually.

The CM also decided to raise subsidy for milk producers from Rs two to Rs four per litre, costing Rs 496 crore per annum. Subsidy for the poor for building houses in rural and urban areas would be raised from Rs 75,000 now to Rs 1.2 lakh under various schemes.

He announced a one-time waiver of loans (arrears and interest) availed by SCs and STs (Rs 349 crore), OBCs (Rs 514.26 crore) and minorities (Rs 362 crore) by government-run corporations.

Siddaramaiah indicated that Ministers would be inducted by Friday even as he acknowledged that it's a difficult exercise. He would leave for New Delhi tomorrow or the day after to hold discussions with Congress President Sonia Gandhi in that regard.

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