Assam budget sees 50 percent women’s quota in government jobs

Guwahati, Feb 1 (IANS) Fifty percent of government jobs in Assam will be reserved for women, Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi announced on Monday, as he tabled a Rs.33,687.43 crore vote-on-account for the first six months of the 2016-17 fiscal.

“I seek vote-on-account on the demand for grants for an aggregate amount of Rs.33,687.43 crore for the period from April 1, 2016 to September 30, 2016,” Gogoi said while tabling the budget in the legislative assembly.

He appealed to the BJP-led central government for more financial support to the state.

Gogoi, who also holds the finance portfolio, said the reservation of women in government jobs will be increased to 50 percent.

The government will take up the Assam Silk Outreach Mission at an estimated cost of Rs.2,400 crore, he said.

The chief minister further proposed a new smart village programme and the setting up of a youth council for holistic development of the state’s youth.

Gogoi announced a series of welfare measures, including Rs.1,000 crore for the upliftment of tribal communities, people living in char (riverine) areas and other backward communities.

He also earmarked another Rs.1,000 crore under the Assam Vikash Yojna for economic empowerment of families living below the poverty line.

Gogoi’s five-year term as chief minister of the Congress-led government ends on May 15. Elections to the assembly are likely to be held in April-May.

Meanwhile, criticising fund cuts, ending of some schemes and changing funding pattern in some schemes by the BJP-led central government, Gogoi said the development of Assam must be facilitated by the Centre.

“Although the Planning Commission has been replaced by the NITI Aayog, which is stated to be a purely advisory body, it has failed to give clear cut guidelines to the states for preparing its annual plans.

“As a result, special category states like Assam have been facing problems of plan fund crisis,” Gogoi said.

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