Amaravati: The Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy government in Andhra Pradesh on Wednesday approved two new schemes for students with a total expenditure of Rs 5,700 crore per annum and also decided to enhance annual income limit for BPL families for availing various benefits.
The state Cabinet met here on Wednesday afternoon and took several decisions in this regard, Information and Public Relations Minister Perni Venkataramaiah said after the meeting.
Under the new Jagananna Vidya Deevena scheme, the state government would spend Rs 3,400 crore every year to reimburse 100 per cent tuition fee for BPL students, belonging to SC, ST, BC, Kapu, minorities, EBC and physically-challenged categories, pursuing various graduate and post-graduate courses.
Another Rs 2,300 crore would be spent on Jagananna Vasati Deevena for provision of hostel expenses to students, the minister told a press conference.
Under Vasati Deevena, the amount would be paid in two installments in July and December every year.
Currently, there were 11,44,490 students availing of the fee reimbursement scheme but the number would go up as the eligibility norms have been relaxed, he added.
The cabinet also decided to issue separate cards for below poverty line (BPL) families to draw rice under the public distribution scheme.
The annual income limit for this has been increased to Rs 10,000 in rural and Rs 12,000 per month per family in urban areas.
The income limit was last revised in 2008 and there has been a demand from peoples representatives for a review.
Accordingly, the cabinet took the decision, the minister said.
The cabinet also approved a scheme for distributing 25 lakh house-sites to eligible poor families in the state besides approving a draft Bill for amending the AP Excise Act, to bring in a new policy related to liquor sale, he said.
The Bill would be introduced in the coming winter session of the Legislature.
The minister said the draft Bill for amending the AP State Commission for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes Act, which would pave the way for establishing separate commissions for SCs and STs, also got the cabinet approval.
The Bill would be introduced in the winter session.
The cabinet, the minister added, approved the proposal to establish a steel plant in Kadapa district.
The state government would set up the AP High-grade Steel Corporation for the purpose.
An extent of 3,295 acres of land would be acquired in Jammalamadugu area of Kadapa district for the proposed plant, foundation for which would be laid on December 26.
The state government would sign a memorandum of understanding with the National Mineral Development Corporation (NMDC) for supply of iron ore for the steel plant.