Siddaramaiah, DKS holds protest against Centre's 'injustice' in releasing drought relief to Karnataka

Centre has only released one-fourth of compensation sought by state, CM says

Siddaramaiah and Shivakumar (File) Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah with Deputy Chief Minister D.K. Shivakumar | PTI

Condemning the Centre for not releasing adequate drought relief funds to the state, Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and his deputy D.K. Shivakumar along with several ministers protested in Bengaluru on Sunday. The chief minister alleged injustice was done to the state.

Holding 'Chombu', the round water pot symbolising emptiness and deception, the leaders charged the Centre with "cheating" Karnataka by not releasing adequate relief to face acute drought, the kind of which was not witnessed in the past several decades. They held the symbolic dharna in front of the Mahatma Gandhi statue on the premises of "Vidhana Soudha", which houses the Legislature and Secretariat.

The state government has declared 226 out of the total 236 Taluks in Karnataka as drought-hit and said there was a crop loss in 48 lakh hectares of land. The chief minister on Saturday tweeted the Centre has released drought relief funds to the state only after approaching the Supreme Court. “The Centre has now released Rs 3,454 crore. As per NDRF rules, we have asked for Rs. 18,171 crore. The money released now is less than one-fourth of the compensation we asked for,” he posted on X.

Tweeting timeline of events which led to the release of funds, Siddaramaiah said if Prime Minister Narendra Modi is really concerned about the state, the Centre should correct the injustice in tax distribution.

However, Opposition leader R. Ashok said, "Siddaramaiah is a ‘Lie Ramaiah', he is lying every day. Now he's asking for Rs 18,108 crore as compensation from the centre. Earlier he said that they have asked for Rs 4,860 crore as compensation, but now he's saying another thing. He's a liar and D.K. Shivakumar is a ‘liar’ Kumar. They are making false statements every day. The central government released funds as per the norms, not only to Karnataka but also to Tamil Nadu and Assam as well,” ANI reported.

-with agency inputs.

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