Stand on Telangana will not affect Congress, says YSR
The Congress party’s present stand on Telangana or the grand alliance of the Telugu Desam, Telangana Rashtra Samithi and the Left parties will not affect its electoral prospects in the ensuing Lok Sabha and Assembly elections in Andhra Pradesh, said Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy here on Saturday.
Talking to media persons after arrival here from Hyderabad, Dr. Reddy said his party would be able to fight in the Telangana region even with its present stand on the statehood issue. The results of the byelections last year showed that the party could win on its own. “Don’t worry,” he added.
Answering a question about his party’s prospects after the formation of the grand alliance of the three opposition parties, the Chief Minister claimed that the Congress had crossed the stage where these mega alliances could cause inconvenience to it. “We are far ahead… we are confident of winning the gold medal. Let the other alliances decide who will split the silver and bronze in the election Olympics,” he remarked.
Dr. Reddy said he had come to Delhi to discuss the party’s election strategy with the leadership and that APCC president D. Srinivas would join him tomorrow (Sunday).
Asked whether he would discuss the multi-crore scam in Satyam Computers with the high command, he replied, “No, not with the party leadership. But, if I am here on Monday and happen to meet the Prime Minister, I might discuss the issue with him.”
Special Correspondent from Hyderabad adds: Dr. Reddy’s visit to Delhi assumes significance in view of the stir created in the party by AICC general secretary M. Veerappa Moily statement that a Bill on separate Telangana was unlikely in the ensuing session of Parliament and that the party was reluctant to give a letter to UPA sub-committee on Telangana.
His statement, which came like a bolt from the blue, drew flak from the State Congress leaders. “The party is already feeling the heat of the grand alliance in Telangana. ow can we face the electorate without a decision on the statehood?” sources close to the APCC chief told The Hindu.
Mr. Srinivas said at a press conference here: “Resolving the Telangana issue is on top of the agenda of the UPA government. The high command was seriously studying the ‘ticklish and controversial’ issue,” he said.
100 dialysis centres under Arogyasri soon
The Andhra Pradesh government will set up 100 dialysis centres in a single go at seven government hospitals immediately at a cost of Rs. 10 crore under Arogyasri health insurance scheme to benefit the poorer sections needing dialysis regularly.
The seven hospitals are: Nizam’s Institute of Medical Sciences (NIMS), Gandhi, Osmania, all in Hyderabad, King George (Visakhapatnam), Sri Venkateswara (Tirupati) and general hospitals at Kurnool and Kakinada. Chief Minister Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy, who cleared the proposal made by the Arogyasri Health Care Trust to set up these dialysis centres on Saturday, asked trust officials to purchase the necessary equipment at once.
YSR sets deadline for officials
Directs Collectors, senior officials to complete pending works by March
Chief Minister Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy has fixed March as the deadline for officials to pass on the intended benefit to the targeted groups under various schemes such as Indiramma Indira Kranti Pathakam.
Interacting with district Collectors along with senior officials through a videoconference at the Secretariat on Saturday, Dr. Reddy asked them to begin enrolment for the new pension scheme being launched to give Rs. 500 per month to eligible old women of self-help groups.
He said the monthly pension under the scheme could go up to Rs. 3,000 corresponding to the contribution made by the beneficiary beyond the statutory one rupee a day. Legislation would be adopted during the next Assembly session for the scheme. He directed the Collectors to complete by March, all the 4.5 lakh dwelling units of Indiramma whose construction reached lintel/roof. “Complaints against non-allotment of benefit must be acted upon by MROs by January 31.” He wanted smart cards to be issued to the beneficiaries of the present monthly pension and to students claiming scholarships/tuition fee reimbursement, to avoid pilferage.