PMK pledges distinct arm in police dept to probe unrequited love in 'shadow budget'
Ahead of the AIADMK government presenting its last budget of the term on Friday (February 14), the Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK), on Wednesday (February 12), released its customary ‘shadow budget’ in which it sought the creation of a separate wing in the police department to deal with cases related to ‘one-sided love affairs’.
Besides demanding that the wing be headed by a senior woman IPS officer, who should be entrusted with the responsibility of probing such cases, the shadow budget also promised introduction of prohibition, in the state, from March 8.
It is to be recalled that the PMK and the Viduthalai Chiruthai Katchi (VCK) have always been at loggerheads over love-affairs involving the youth of both the communities.
On Monday (February 10), the PMK released its ‘agriculture shadow budget’, which promised the creation of 50 lakh new employment opportunities in agriculture and horticulture, in the next five years. It has also promised to fix the Minimum Support Price (MSP) for paddy at ₹2,806.98 per quintal.
Taking into account the low cultivation and production of sugar in the last ten years, and the arrears of ₹1,500 crores that the sugar mills owe the farmers, the budget has promised to provide the amount to the mills, without interest, to help them pay back their debt to the peasants.
The shadow budget has also assured to raise the irrigation cover from 26.79 lakh hectares to 50 lakh hectares through various schemes like Godavari – Cauvery scheme, Palar irrigation scheme and Thamirabharani – Nambiyar river linking scheme.
It has been the practice to release the “shadow agriculture budget”, ahead of presenting the “general shadow budget”, since 2008. The presentation of the “shadow general budget” began in 2003. Both of them are prepared, every year, by a team of senior party leaders headed by party founder Dr S Ramadoss. This is being done by the PMK to assure the public that they would implement all that they promise in the two budgets, should they come to power.
“We don’t finalise the budget by staying indoors. We travel across the state, interact with people and prepare it after taking into account the needs of the people. We also prioritise issues,” said AK Moorthy, deputy general secretary of the party.
“Take the Chief Minister’s announcement of declaring the delta regions as ‘protected agricultural zone’. It is actually a demand put forth by us, when we entered into an alliance with them. The government will borrow our ideas and announce them in the budget as their own” he added.
Meanwhile, Chennai-based Satta Panchayat Iyakkam, an organisation working towards good governance has demanded that the state government come out with ‘project status reports’ for schemes announced in the previous budget.
“In every budget the government announces some 20-30 new schemes. After the budget sessions, the schemes are forgotten. Though the government is not bound to give details, about the status of schemes, announced in the previous budgets, under the Right To Information Act, sec 4, each and every department of the government should ‘voluntarily disclose information to the public’. In line with the RTI Act, we want the government to come out with such a report” said Senthil Arumugam, general secretary of the organisation.