Politics not as easy as acting: YSRs
Chief Minister launches broadside against Praja Rajyam president at road show
Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy on Sunday said politics was not as easy as donning a role in films.
He made the remark against Praja Rajyam president Chiranjeevi amid loud applause at the road show kicked off by him, the first in Visakhapatnam district, virtually launching the pre-poll campaign.
Dr. Reddy, after his arrival in Visakhapatnam drove to the jaggery town and took the occasion to launch developmental works worth Rs.150 crore, including construction of three barrages over river Sarada at a cost of Rs.47 crore and modernisation of Govada sugar factory at a cost of Rs.30 crore. Amid catcalls and clapping from cheering supporters, Dr. Reddy’s roadshow covered the route from Anakapalle to Narsipatnam, the gateway to the agency areas of the district, where Mr. Chiranjeevi had attracted large crowds during his Praja Ankita Yatra last month.
Accompanied by Minister for Commercial Taxes Konathala Ramakrishna, people greeted the Chief Minister lustily at Govada, Kothuru junction, Chodavaram, Vaddadi, Ravikamatham and Narsipatnam.
Sharpening his attack against the Praja Rajyam, he said the megastar had earned crores of rupees during his 30-year film career but did not bother to spend a single paisa for the development of his native village.
“Now he is talking about ushering in change. At the same time, he is opposing the grounding of irrigation projects. I don’t know what sort of change he is contemplating on,” Dr Rajasekhara Reddy said with a note of sarcasm.
He said that Mr. Chiranjeevi was hitting the road with the photos of Mahatma Gandhi and Mother Teresa. “At the road shows, he is slapping his thighs and twirling his moustache. Is this the new political culture he is talking about,” he asked. In a scathing attack on the Telugu Desam, he said its president N. Chandrababu Naidu was promising the moon to the voters, viz. free power, free houses, free rice and what not.
“Does he have the credibility to promise all these things when as the Chief Minister for nine years, he increased the price of cheap rice from Rs.2 to Rs.5.25 a kg and burdened the poor by increasing power tariff,” he asked.
Opposition obstructing irrigation projects: YSR
Chief Minister Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy has cautioned farmers against political parties “that were hell bent on obstructing construction of irrigation projects in the State”.
Dr. Reddy, who is scheduled to dedicate the Gundlakamma irrigation project in Prakasam district to the people of the State on Sunday during a teleconference with Major Irrigation Minister Ponnala Lakshmaiah referred to the attempts by some parties to hinder construction of the ongoing irrigation projects.
A press release from the Chief Minister’s office here said that some Opposition parties which had ridiculed the government’s commitment to construct the pending irrigation projects were unable to digest the fact that sufficient funds were raised and major projects secured the necessary permissions. He said when they could not stall these projects; these parties began to accuse the government of corruption.
He said farmers had seen through the ploy of opposition parties and were ready to teach them a fitting lesson. He said the government was confident of completing the projects with the cooperation of the people even though the opposition parties were critical of the projects.
YSR to launch Gundlakamma today
The project will use mostly regenerated water from Nagarjuna Sagar canals
Problems in land acquisition delay the project
Project completed two years ago but water could not be released for want of canals
Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy will inaugurate the Rs. 592-crore Gundlakamma irrigation project to provide irrigation to 40,000 acres in the first phase on Monday. The project, when it was completed, would use mostly regenerated water from Nagarjuna Sagar canals to provide irrigation to 80,000 acres and drinking water to 2.5 lakh people.
The Congress Government took up the project as a fast track project in July 2004 and wanted to complete works of the project it in two years.
But the project was delayed due to problems relating to acquisition of land and providing relief and rehabilitation to people of five fully submerged and seven partially submerged villages.
Though the project was completed two years ago, water could not be released for want of canals.
The canal network remained incomplete even now because farmers opposed acquisition of land and the case is pending in High Court.
Also, officials can impound water only to a height of 21.5 meters as against full reservoir level of 24.38 meters to avoid submersion of Garlapadu and Dhenuvakonda villages where people continue to live due to delay in their rehabilitation.
Even though officials would release water to 40,000 acres now, it is too late for farmers to raise paddy or irrigated dry crops.
They can at best use water to give one wetting for tobacco or Bengal gram crop they had raised in this rabi season.
It was Telugu Desam Party government that gave administrative sanction for the project at an estimated cost of Rs. 165 crores in 2003. However it did not release any funds. Finance Minister, K Rosaiah laid foundation stone for the project and the estimates were revised to Rs. 453 crores including the cost of Rs. 252 crores for land acquisition, relief and rehabilitation package.
The land acquisition became controversial. Even Congress leaders made corruption charges against officials in land acquisition and implementation of relief package.
The project cost has since been revised to Rs. 592 crores due to steep rise in cost of rehabilitation, said Chief Engineer, Rajagopal.
All pre-poll promises fulfilled: YSR
Sonia Gandhi to launch work on Godavari lift irrigation scheme next month
Rajasekhara Reddy says Jalayagnam will be a reality soon
Asserts that Telugu Desam and Praja Rajyam only want to capture power
Construction of Godavari water lift irrigation scheme to benefit eight lakh acres in three North Andhra districts at a total cost of Rs.7,000 crores will be launched next month by United Progressive Alliance Chairperson Sonia Gandhi next month.
Announcing this at the roadshow conducted by him at Anakapalle, Tummapalem, Govada, Kothuru junction, Chodavaram and other areas in the district, Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy said the project named Uttara Andhra Sujala Sravanti would bring about a big change in the region.
The Chief Minister, during his whirlwind tour, addressed several wayside meetings during the widely publicised roadshow and said the Polavaram (Indira Sagar) project was also going on at a brisk pace with huge investment.
He said his dream project Jalayagnam would soon be a reality. He said, notwithstanding the efforts by the opposition parties and those who did not want the State to be placed on forward march, by creating obstacles, the Congress Government was going ahead with the execution of work on Polavaram and other pending projects. He said his predecessor and Telugu Desam president N. Chandrababu Naidu had no right to criticise as he did not do anything to get clearances for pending irrigation and power projects during his nine-year stint.
Highlighting the achievements of his government, he said they had so far provided 30 lakh houses to the poor and had plans to complete construction of 50 lakh more in next two to three years.
He said under Indiramma housing scheme, they did not want anyone to remain houseless in next few years.
Dr. Reddy said though they had not promised Rs.2-a-kg rice to white cardholders, they had revived it.
“We have fulfilled all our pre-poll promises and taken up cheap rice scheme considering the genuine needs of the poorest of the poor. Serving the poor is our dream whereas Mr. Chandrababu Naidu and actor-turned-politician Chiranjeevi are interested in capturing power without a commitment to serve the people,” he claimed.
On the call for a grand alliance among all the non-Congress parties, he said they were not confident to face the Congress in the next elections. “People are better judges. They have to assess who has more commitment to serve them and accordingly they should cast their franchise,” he said.
Minister for Commercial Taxes Konathala Ramakrishna, DCCB president Balireddy Satya Rao and others were present.
Stone laid for Rs. 30-cr. works on modernisation of sugar factory
It will enable cane growers to get a higher price, says YSR
Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy on Sunday laid the stone for modernisation of Govada sugar factory at a cost of Rs.30 crores.
Speaking at a meeting on the occasion, he said the modernisation of the factory being run successfully in the cooperative sector would benefit cane growers in getting a higher price and announced the setting up of a distillery to make use of molasses at a cost of Rs.50 crores.
Blaming the Telugu Desam for delaying the expansion and modernisation work for several years, he said while the Congress Government was striving to strengthen the cooperative institutions, the Telugu Desam regime had indiscriminately sold cooperative sugar factories to private parties.
During his visit, Dr. Reddy laid stone for three anicuts across the Sarada at a cost of Rs.40 crores, construction of rail overbridge at Kasimkota at Rs. 21 crores, providing infrastructure in slums of Anakapalle at Rs.4.21 crores and launched 104 rural mobile health services.
The Chief Minister later laid the stone for construction of 1,300 houses under Indiramma phase-III between RTC Complex junction and Kothuru junction and launched work on BT road from Devarapalli to Sirsapalli via Pedakota at an estimated cost of Rs.4.20 crores.
After lunch at Vaddadi, he laid the stone for mandal parishad office of Ravikamatham with a grant of Rs.55 lakhs and launched a drinking water scheme at Rolugunta at a cost of Rs.3.25 crores.
Scribes’ appeal to YSR
The Vizag Journalists’ Mutually Aided Co-operative House Building Society Limited on Sunday appealed to Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy to initiate steps for hastening the process of allotting house-sites to working journalists.
Representatives of the society submitted a memorandum to the Chief Minister after his arrival at the airport for a tour of the district. The issue was also taken to the notice of Commercial Taxes Minister Konathala Ramakrishna. The society representatives thanked the Chief Minister and the Minister for their “positive response.”