BJP-led Central govt taking revenge against Telangana, flays KTR

IT minister KT Rama Rao
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IT minister KT Rama Rao

Highlights

TRS working president and Minister KT Rama Rao slammed the Narendra Modi government at Centre for not coming to the rescue of rain-battered Telangana.

Hyderabad: TRS working president and Minister KT Rama Rao slammed the Narendra Modi government at Centre for not coming to the rescue of rain-battered Telangana. He stated that the Central government was treating Telangana like an enemy and taking revenge on the State without sanctioning funds on one pretext or the other, with political motives.

"Just like the financial sanctions imposed on the enemy countries, the Union government is imposing several restrictions on Telangana to release funds and give fiscal approvals. Despite the unprecedented floods in Godavari River, the Centre did not release even a paise to the State towards relief measures," he said, during an informal interaction with media persons on Friday.

Terming Narendra Modi as only Prime Minister of Gujarat, Rama Rao said the Prime Minister who released Rs 1,000 crore as advance relief fund to flood-hit Gujarat, had not responded on the unprecedented flood situation in the State. He stated that if the Prime Minister had any humanity left in him, he should respond immediately and release funds. He reminded that despite repeated requests from the State, the union government did not release any funds for flood relief measures during the 2020 floods in Hyderabad.

While the State was reeling under floods, the Minister stated that the union government sent Central teams to the State alleging irregularities under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS). "The Central government is objecting to us taking up construction of Rythu Vedikas and drying platforms for the benefit of the farmers. Why such wild allegations of corruption and irregularities unless we misused the funds? Instead, the union government should encourage other States to emulate Telangana and create assets like Rythu Vedikas under the scheme," he suggested.

Coming down heavily on the BJP government, Rama Rao wondered if the BJP was running a Sarkaar (government) or circus. The union government has no policy or plan of action on various issues. He ridiculed the Centre changing its stance on paddy procurement from Telangana. "First, the union Minister (Piyush Goyal) agreed to procure only raw rice as there were huge stocks of boiled rice. But later, they refused to buy CMR (custom milled rice) citing irregularities. Similarly, the Centre asked the States to promote crop diversification, but now, the Union Minister wants the States to increase paddy cultivation," he said.

He reminded that Modi as the then Chief Minister of Gujarat attributed the fall in Rupee value to the corruption in the then UPA government. He asked the BJP leaders who were criticising the Telangana government for availing market borrowings, to understand that they were being obtained within the permissable limits. "Since Indian independence, all the Prime Ministers obtained loans amounting to Rs 56 lakh crore. But the Narendra Modi government alone availed loans amounting to Rs 100 crore," he added.

The Minister launched a scathing attack on the Centre for not amending the ROFR (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act despite repeated requests from the State government to resolve the Podu lands issue. He said though the State government was ready to regularise and hand over pattas pertaining to about 12 lakh acres of forest lands, the union government did not amend the ROFR Act which was delaying the process.

He also strongly objected to the Centre's plans to amend the Forest Rights Act to remove the norms for obtaining consent from the tribal local bodies for taking up any works in the forest areas. Terming these amendments detrimental to rigths of forest dwellers, the TRS MPs will obstruct the passage of these amendments in the Parliament.

Rama Rao strongly objected to the Centre's restrictions on usage of certain words in the Parliament by terming them as unparliamentary. He felt that the BJP banned usage of all words that the Opposition will use against them, but pointed out that it was Prime Minister Modi who used the term 'Andholan Jeevi' against the protestors of farm laws in the Parliament.

The TRS working president also found fault with the BJP leadership trying to force its ideology on the people of the country. He reminded that India was known for its unity in diversity, but the BJP was trying to end diversity by imposing its unified agenda. "Who are the BJP leaders to decide what people should eat or wear in a democratic country? We should not be astonished at the BJP leaders awarding works on nomination basis and defend that emporers like Shahjahan or Ashoka never invited tenders," he added.

Asserting that the TRS leadership was aware of the people's issues, the Minister said the distribution of new ration cards, Aasara pensions and housing will begin shortly. After obtaining the Chief Minister's approval, all the eligible persons will receive the benefits. He also assured that the issues pertaining to the Dharani website also will be addressed shortly.

Rama Rao also allayed apprehensions over delayed payment of salaries to the government employees and termed it as a minute issue when compared to huge hikes given to the employees. "There are no restrictions on payment of salaries, but only a slight delay due to various circumstances. One should keep in mind that the employees of Telangana government receive bigger salaries than their counterparts in the union government," he said.

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