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JDS slams BJP govt over forest fires in Karnataka, claims 'delay' in fund release

Bengaluru: The Janata Dal Secular on Wednesday targeted the BJP's 'double-engine government' in Karnataka and at Centre over forest fires in the state owing to dry spells, saying that the failure of the Basavaraj Bommai government inflicted huge losses on the state.
The party, which ruled the state previous in alliance with the Congress, said it is the duty of the state government to put in place modern technology to contain forest fires. "Forest fires have been raging across Karnataka over the last few days. They cause harm to local communities and wildlife while also taking a heavy fiscal toll on the state. They make the surface hard that reduce water absorption & burn down regeneration, effectively degrading the ecosystem," read a tweet on the official handle of the JDS.
"More than 70 per cent of forest in the state is dry deciduous, scrub & unwooded grasslands. The state has limited resources. It is the duty of the State government to enhance surveillance by roping in local communities. Modern technology must be in place to contain the fire," it added.
The party claimed further that the BJP government allocated a mere Rs 13 crore in the state Budget for fighting forest fires, adding that of the amount set aside, Rs 3 crore are supposed to come from the Centre.
They alleged further of the Centre's share of funds, only 25 per cent have been released, with just 3 weeks to go for the end of the financial year 2022-23.
"Delayed release of funds from the Union government and failure to adopt modern methods have cost huge losses already. The @BJP4Karnataka government in the state has reserved a paltry annual budget of Rs 13 crore for firefighting," JDS tweeted further.
"Of this, Rs 3 crore had to come from the Union government. As per the records, only 25 per cent of the funds has been released. Does the double engine government aware of the fact that only three weeks are left for the financial year to end?" the party added. (ANI)

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