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Bhagya series: State Government to launch 'Vastra Bhagya' for BPL families

Bengaluru: The state government has no intentions of calling a halt to populist schemes, for it is contemplating the launch of “Vastra bhagya” to hand out handloom sarees for women and dhotis for men belonging to BPL families next fiscal, according to minister for textiles Babu Rao Chinchansur.

He told the media that the new scheme could cost the state exchequer about Rs 100 crores to Rs 150 crores every year though no decision was taken whether to distribute these clothes at subsidised price or free. A similar scheme was launched in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh where sarees and dhotis were distributed to poor families during three important festivals. The Tamil Nadu model would be studied to weigh the pros and cons of its implementation in Karnataka.

“We are planning to distribute sarees and blouses for ladies and dhotis, shirts and towels for men. A detailed proposal is being worked out which will be submitted to Chief Minister Siddaramaiah for inclusion in the budget for the year 2016-17,” he added.

The minister said there were 1.25 lakh working power looms, 75,000 working hand loom and around 10,000 manual looms at 1,000 co-operative societies. These units could produce sufficient quantity of hand loom sarees and dhotis for one crore plus BPL families.

Funds were not a constraint as the Chief Minister was very much in favor of launching this scheme from 2016-17. "Our department will select three important festivals during which sarees and dhotis will be given to poor families. In all probability, it may be given free of cost", he added.

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