N-K floods may dampen budget spirit.

By Express News Service

BENGALURU: The severe flooding in North Karnataka seems to dampen the state budget spirit this fiscal and the chief minister is said to have discussed the same with his ministerial team.As the state budget is nearing and pre-budget meetings have started, politicians holding departmental portfolios have also spelt it out to their respective departments to keep the budget constraints while chalking out their demands. This was also evident at the first pre-budget meeting of the Tourism Department held on Tuesday. 

“Since there is shortage of funds with the government, we were told to work within constraints. The government has decided to lay focus more on farmers’ welfare, development of flooded regions of North Karnataka, and flooded and flood prone areas of South Karnataka. Hence, we are unable to demand money for new works, we have been told to manage with the funds allocated for ongoing works only. So we are planning to implement Minister CT Ravi’s idea of maintaining a calendar, in this way, events of every district will be promoted and the tourist spots will also get a facelift to attract more people,” said a tourism department official, who did not want to be named. 

The department said that while creating the budget allocations, a detailed meeting with Tourism Task Force (headed by Sudha Murty, chairperson of Infosys Foundation) and Karnataka Tourism Vision Group will also need to be held.At a meeting they will also be communicated to cut down on the large proposals planned.

“More thrust will be laid on implementing the new tourism policy, modifying the subsidy for setting up hotels and also venturing into more of public private partnership projects to get more funds for upgrading tourism facilities and how Karnataka as a destination can be boosted more as Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Kerala are more preferred now when compared to Karnataka,” the official said. 

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