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If you can't handle agrarian crisis quit, congress tells Pocharam

Tue, Jul 05, 2016, 06:14 PM
The Telangana Congress Legislature Party on Tuesday demanded the resignation of State Agriculture Minister Pocharam Srinivas Reddy following his confession that he was unable to handle the ongoing agrarian crisis.

Addressing a press conference at CLP office in Assembly premises, Leader of Opposition in Legislative Council Mohammed Ali Shabbir said that the Minister himself admitted that he was unable to control the bankers, seed or fertilizer companies and other issues related to farmers.

"Almost 70% of Telangana's population is directly or indirectly dependent on agriculture. Farmers already lost four crop seasons and today they have no money to take up cultivation in the ongoing Khariff season. They are already debt-ridden farmers and being denied loans by almost all banks.

Instead of clearing the entire dues under Rs. 1 lakh crop loan waiver scheme, the TRS Government has split the payment of third installment of Rs. 4,250 Crore into four parts and cleared only 12.5% of the amount. This is an insult to farmers," said Shabbir Ali.

The Congress leader said when the TRS Government could spend huge amounts on irrigation, water grid project and other schemes, why was it hesitant to clear farmers' loans.

"Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao has kept over Rs. 4,500 Crore under his Special Fund. But he is reluctant to make farmers free from debts by clearing off their loans," he said and demanded that the entire dues of crop loan waiver scheme should be released 'without an hour delay'.

The Congress leader also ridiculed the Agriculture Minister's reported contention that the State Government was not responsible for supply of spurious seeds. "It is the duty of the State Government to ensure that farmers are supplied quality seeds and fertilizers in adequate quantities and affordable prices. But the TRS Government is trying to run away from its responsibilities and leaving the farmers to their fate. If the Agriculture Minister is feeling so helpless, then he should resign from his post," Shabbir Ali demanded.

He also demanded input subsidy, subsidized seeds and fertilizers and other assistance to the farmers to ensure that they reap a profitable Khariff season.

Deputy CLP leader Ponguleti Sudhakar Reddy asked TRS leaders and KCR to do serious introspection on how they mishandled issues concerning public health, education and agriculture. He said KCR had been trying to screen the 'Bangaru Telangana' movie based on fake promises and false hopes. He told KCR that Telangana was very vast and not confined to Yerravelli.

MLC Santosh Kumar was also present in the press conference.
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