Dharamsala: Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh on Monday said, to provide benefits of various welfare schemes to the maximum number of people belonging to OBC category, his government had increased the income limit of creamy layer from Rs 4.5 lakh to Rs 6 lakh per annum.
Presiding over a meeting of the Himachal Pradesh Other Backward Classes (OBC) Welfare Board at Parayas Bhawan here, Singh said as per 2001 census the state`s OBC population was 9,27,542 -- 15.27 per cent of the total population.
He said, in order to provide proper representation to OBCs in government jobs, reservation of 12 per cent for Class-I and II categories and 18 per cent for Class-III and IV had been provided.
He said the inclusion of more sub-castes in OBC group was being considered by the Central Backward Category Commission.
The Chief Minister said his government, in the past one year, was ensuring equal development for all, and various initiatives were being taken to facilitate speedy growth of all categories, especially the weaker sections.
Singh directed the district administration to construct a link road leading to the cremation site of Labana community in Galma panchayat of Mandi district, and to repair the approach road to a community temple at Tanda in Lohara panchayat.
On the monkey menace, the Chief Minister laid stress on the need of planting fruit-bearing species in forests so that monkeys did not stray out for food.
Singh said directions had been issued to prepare a project report for channelisation of Batta river in Sirmour district, and asked the PWD authorities to prepare a feasibility report for constructing a bridge over the river to link Fatehpur with Gulabnagar.
State Social Justice and Empowerment Minister Dhani Ram Shandil, while welcoming the Chief Minister, said the state government had started various schemes for the uplift and welfare of OBCs. He said with a view to provide employment opportunities to the people of these communities various training programmes had been conducted in the State.
Shandil said the number of OBC students availing benefits under various welfare schemes had also been increased from 500 to 2,500 during the current financial year.