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‘No curbs on paddy cultivation’

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Huzurabad: Finance Minister T Harish Rao on Wednesday categorically stated that farmers could cultivate the crop of their choice and there was no restriction on the selection of crop cultivation. “BJP leaders are spreading falsehood that the State government is placing restrictions on the cultivation of paddy. There is no truth in the BJP’s propaganda,” the Minister said.

The government, he said, was ready to procure the entire paddy produce in the State, and went on to point out that no government in the past 70 years had given any monetary assistance to farmers in the country.

Addressing a campaign meeting at Bijigirisharif in Jammikunta mandal, Harish Rao said not only did successive governments fail to come to the rescue of farmers, they also collected tax for water and land. “The TRS government in fact is paying tax to farmers in the name of Rythu Bandhu,” he noted.

Earlier, farmers used to face severe hardships to cultivate crops during Yasangi season. They used to develop seedlings in a quandary and the paddy used to wither due to lack of water. Enraged over the withered crops, farmers used to damage canals and stage dharnas for irrigation water, the Minister said, adding that the situation, however, changed after the State formation. “Now, sufficient irrigation water is being supplied to agriculture fields following the completion of Kaleshwaram Lift Irrigation Scheme,” he said

Saying that Telangana was the only State which was supplying 24-hour uninterrupted power supply to the agriculture sector, the Finance Minister promised to waive crop loans up to Rs 1 lakh in the next budget and pension to the people aged above 57 years.

While the State government was providing all kinds of assistance to farmers like Rythu Bandhu scheme, the BJP government at the Center was imposing a huge burden by increasing the prices of diesel, petrol and cooking gas. Farmers, who used to spend Rs 2,500 to till an acre of land with a tractor, have to spend Rs 6,000 due to the surge in diesel price. the Minister said, adding that the Centre was planning to increase the gas price by Rs 200 after the completion of Huzurabad bypolls.

Under the Ujwala scheme, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had given a gas connection to a woman Dola Kumari of Bihar State. However, she stopped using cooking gas and using firewood instead as the gas price surged to Rs 1,000 from Rs 500, said Harish who predicted that the price of cooking gas would reach Rs 2,000 in the coming one-year period.

Harish said though his party leaders asked them for the reduction of the price of cooking gas, Union Minister G Kishan Reddy, Eatala Rajender and other BJP leaders were not responding on the issue.

Besides providing Shaadi Mubarak, minority residential schools were also established to provide English medium education to minority students. Per year, more than Rs 1 lakh amount is being spent on each student, he said.

Predicting that TRS candidate Gellu Srinivas Yadav was going to win the election with a 25,000 majority, he promised to develop Illanthakunta Ramalayam temple with Rs 10 crore and Bijigirisharif Dargah by allocating Rs 1 crore after the election of the TRS candidate.

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