With the upcoming Lok Sabha elections, the Andhra Pradesh government announced sops for farmers by merging a state programme with the Centre's, thereby enabling each tenant farmer to get Rs. 10,000 a year in two installments.
Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu passed the ''Annadaata Sukhibhava'' scheme on Wednesday under which the state government will give Rs. 4,000 per annum for farmers in addition to Rs. 6,000 announced by the Centre in its interim budget.
The state government has decided to make it open for all, including those too who have large landholdings than the five acres fixed by the centre.
Chandrababu Naidu’s government in Andhra Pradesh had announced an economic support scheme for farmers and doubled the unemployment pension to Rs. 2,000 on 5th February
Despite the fact that Kharif crop season begins only in June, the state government had decided to distribute cheques for Rs. 5,000 each to farmers by February end as the general elections are only three months away.
Chief Secretary of Andhra Pradesh, Mr. Reddy said that what the centre had offered to the farmers (6000/annum) would only benefit 54 lakh farmers in Andhra Pradesh. However, their scheme would cover another 10-15 lakhs of farmers with more than five acres of land.
The state cabinet has also planned to distribute free smartphones to all members of women self-help groups. Under the scheme Development of Women and Children in Rural Areas (DWCRA) programme, Rs.10,000 and a smartphone is promised to be given to each of the women in a self-help group.