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With an Eye on 2019 Elections, KCR to Launch Telangana Agri Scheme Today

Under the welfare scheme, the government will provide each farmer Rs 4,000 per acre for the monsoon crop and another Rs 4,000 per acre for the summer crop, as input subsidy.

Sakshi Khanna | CNN-News18

Updated:May 10, 2018, 10:06 AM IST
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With an Eye on 2019 Elections, KCR to Launch Telangana Agri Scheme Today
Telangana CM K Chandrashekhar Rao will launch ‘Rythu Bandhu Scheme’ on Thursday (News18)
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Telangana: At a time when Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress president Rahul Gandhi are trading barbs over farmers’ issues, Telangana chief minister K Chandrashekar Rao is all set to launch state's flagship ‘Rythu Bandhu Scheme’ on Thursday. The timing of the scheme gains significance as it comes a year ahead of the state Assembly elections.

Under the welfare scheme, the government will provide each farmer Rs 4,000 per acre for the monsoon crop and another Rs 4,000 per acre for the summer crop, as input subsidy. The scheme is said to will benefit nearly 58 lakh farmers in the state.

Elaborate arrangements have been made at Huzurabad in Karimnagar District, where the chief minister will launch the distribution of Rythu Bandhu Scheme Cheques and New Pattadar Pass Books.

Various Ministers, MPs, MLAs, MLCs will launch the program in their respective constituencies on the same day.

“Farmers every year face lot of difficulties and hardships to mobilise investment for agriculture. If, for any reason, they fail to get proper crop then they lose all the investment. This pushes them to financial troubles. To overcome all these problems the government has decoded to give them investment support. Well before the monsoon crop season, the financial support shall reach the farmer, and prevent farmers from debt trap", the chief minister said.

The launch of the scheme also comes at a time when Telangana chief minister K Chandrashekhar Rao is eyeing national politics and is making effort to form a new progressive front to bring qualitative change in country.

In this backdrop, the Telangana government is leaving no stone unturned to make the whole program a great success.

In the first batch, cheques of Rs 4,000 per acre towards investment support scheme for agriculture for the monsoon crop will be distributed. More than 2,700 teams have been formed to carry out distribution work across districts.

The state government has ensured required funds and cash reserves are deposited in the banks. According to officials, about Rs 6,000 crore cash reserves have been kept ready with the banks to be utilized for the scheme.

Keeping in view the severe heat conditions prevailing in the State, the government has ordered distribution programme between 7 am to 11 am and 5.00 pm to 7:30pm. The officials have been instructed to put on tents and provide drinking water facility at distribution centres in all villages.

Calling it a political scheme launched ahead of the state and general elections, the opposition is raising questions.

Telangana Congress has slammed ruling TRS for playing election gimmick through the scheme. TPCC chief Uttam Kumar Reddy said, "The ruling TRS has completely neglected agriculture sector. More than 4500 farmers have committed suicide in last four years. Against the demand of farmers for remunerative prices for their produce, TRS government is launching Rythu Bandhu keeping elections in view. Farmers want relief from loans and interest burdens."

BJP spokesperson Krishna Sagar Rao said, "Chief Minister KCR has done nothing for the farmers. Now to make it up, he is publicly bribing voters and farmers. BJP wants farmers to benefit, but this is a political scheme and will backfire."

Many farmer groups also organised dharna at District Collectorates across Telangana, demanding that Rythu Bandhu scheme should be not be limited to only the land patta holders but also be extended to real cultivators who are bearing the expenditure of cultivation including tenant farmers, adivasi farmers, etc.

Telangana chief minister had also invited other regional leaders for the launch. However, no leader has confirmed their presence for the program.
| Edited by: Sumedha Kirti
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