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Maharashtra Govt tables supplementary demands of Rs 20k cr on first day of Winter session

The Maharashtra government Monday tabled supplementary demands of Rs 20,326 crore on the first day of the winter session of the Legislative Assembly. The supplementary demands include funds for Maratha reservations, which was announced by the state government Sunday, for a proposed committee to recommend simultaneous Assembly and Lok Sabha polls as well as to provide relief to drought-hit farmers.

The government said supplementary demands included provisions required during the current financial year in respect of items auctioned by the Government in anticipation of the approval of the legislature and for repayment of Contingency Fund as well as additional expenditure likely to be incurred during the remaining part of the year. A fund of Rs 500 crore will be provided for expenses to be incurred to implement Maratha reservation.

The Rs 5,000 crore advance drawn from the Contingency Fund on October 8 this year will be recouped through the supplementary demands. Another Rs 2,200 crore for financial assistance to farmers in drought-affected areas has been provided while a Rs 200 crore provision has been made for implementation of the Ayushman Bharat health scheme in the supplementary demands. A sum of Rs 26 crore has been provided to the General Administration Department (GAD) to hold Parliamentary polls.

This amount includes expenses connected to awareness programmes to be held for voters regarding EVM and VVPAT machines and checking of EVMs by the Electronics Corporation of India and Bharat Electronics Ltd. Similarly, a fund of Rs 60 lakh will be provided for administrative expenses of a two-member committee to be appointed to give recommendations to curb misuse of resources and conduct simultaneous polls for Parliament, Assembly and local bodies.

A supplementary demand of Rs 42 crore has been proposed for honorarium and office expenses of the Commission of Inquiry to probe the Bhima Koregaon violence, since the budgeted provision for this purpose was found inadequate. It has been decided to provide a fund of Rs 12 crore for maintenance and repair of 206 "Hutatma Smarks" (martyrs' memorials) in the state. Another Rs 19 crore will be allocated for additional funds for engine repairs of government aircraft and to cover the expenses of rental aircraft for VVIP travel. A provision of Rs 42 crore has been made for monetary relief for people jailed during the Emergency, which was imposed between 1975 and 1977.

The supplementary demands included Rs 4.5 crore to be allocated to produce a biopic on the social reformer and thinker Mahatma Jyotiba Phule. A sum of Rs 1.5 crore will be provided as additional fund for "secret services" of the police.

(With inputs from agencies.)

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