If the Congress party promising Rs 72,000 to 5 crore families was not enough, now the Telugu Desam Party in Andhra Pradesh has announced a dole of Rs 2 lakh to each family every year. Releasing the party manifesto for the Lok Sabha elections, TDP president and AP chief minister Chandrababu Naidu said that while Congress is promising Rs 72,000 per year to the poor families if his party comes back to power in the state, his government will give Rs 2 lakh to each family every year.
“Nobody can match us in extending such largesse even in imagination,” Naidu said. The scheme will cover everyone in the state, with the monetary benefits starting from womb to tomb, the party said. The TDP manifesto also promised to continue the PM Kisan Samman scheme of the central government with a matching grant from the state, which will give a benefit of Rs 15,000 to each farmer every year.
The election for the 175 constituencies of Andhra Pradesh assembly will take place on 11th April, along with the election for 25 Lok Sabha seats in the state.
Rival YSR Congress also announced monetary doles in its manifesto for the elections. The party is promising Rs 12,500 every year to farmers, a stipend of Rs 60,000 junior lawyers, and many such monetary benefits to students, SHGs, women etc.
With almost 4.94 crore population, Andhra Pradesh has more than 1.26 crore families as the average family size in the state is 3.9. This means the scheme of paying 2 lakh per year to every family will cost more than 2.5 lakh crore. For comparison, the 2019 budget for the state is Rs 2.26 lakh crore, which was Rs 1.91 lakh crore in the previous year.
Chandrababu Naidu has been demanding the special category status for Andhra Pradesh, claiming that the state’s financial resources are poor. The party even exited the NDA over the demand; therefore, it is not clear how the party proposes to finance a scheme which will cost more than the entire budget expenditure of the state.