Hyderabad: Efforts of the Telangana government to provide security of life to vulnerable sections of people through a series of welfare measures had led the State being recognised as number one in the country in resource allocation for this sector, Governor ESL Narasimhan said. During his joint address to the Legislative Council and Assembly here on Saturday, the Governor said the welfare schemes introduced by the State government created self-confidence among the people of Telangana and provided them the assurance that their lives are secure in the State..
Providing examples of how this was achieved, Narasimhan said as opposed to ‘a meagre amount as pension to widows and old aged people’, the TRS Government substantially increased such pensions. “My government announced an enhancement from Rs 1,000 to Rs 1,500 per month to enable them meet their minimum needs. The Kalyana Lakshmi and Shaadi Mubarak schemes that provide Rs 1,00,116 financial assistance for girls from poor families for their weddings, have become a role model in the entire country,” he said. The Governor also spoke about how the State Government embarked on construction of 2,72,763 two-bedroom houses that are being given to poor families free of cost. The government has waived dues of beneficiaries which they were supposed to pay under weaker section housing scheme to a tune of Rs 4,000 crore. He also said as part of the KG to PG education policy, residential schools and colleges were started on a large scale. Before Telangana State was formed, there were only 296 residential schools to serve SC/ST/BC/Minorities in the State with their facilities leaving much to be desired. Since formation of the State, the Telangana government established 542 new residential schools with excellent facilities and proposes to start another 119 residential schools from the next academic year. Residential degree colleges have also been started for SC and ST students and the government spends, on an average, Rs 1,20,000 per student for providing good food and all facilities including stay. “My government provides overseas scholarship of Rs 20 lakh per student on the name of BR Ambedkar and Mahatma Jyotiba Pule to those poor students who pursue education abroad,” he said. ‘Revival of rural economy a cornerstone’ Reconstruction and revitalisation of rural economy has been one of the cornerstones of the Telangana State Government in the past four years and the Government will continue with its efforts to further improve lives in rural Telangana, Governor ESL Narasimhan said on Saturday. He said Telangana’s rural economy was neglected for long but it was now on the path to recovery. The State Government, through its initiatives, has begun changing the lifestyles of BC communities for the better in the State through revival of hereditary and traditional occupations. The various welfare schemes and programmes taken up by the Telangana government, has no parallels, the Governor said. These are beginning to change the lives of Yadavas, Kurumas, Vishwa Karmas, Rajakas, barbers, and handloom weavers as well as other BC communities, who he described as ‘the greatest human resource of Telangana’ and added, “the service that they render to society is invaluable.” The Governor spoke about the large scale distribution of sheep to Yadavas and Kurumas which has so far seen 75 lakh sheep being distributed. The offspring from these sheep have already ensured a combined wealth of Rs 1,200 crore to the Golla Kurumas. Telangana is also the only State known to run100 mobile clinics for sheep and other livestock providing emergency medical facilities for the animals. Similarly, he said, the Government took up large scale fish and prawn seeding in all water bodies in the state which in turn resulted in a steep increase in the income of fishermen. He said special care was taken for weavers’ welfare through several programmes and among them is the purchase of handloom products locally in the form of uniform cloth for students, police personnel and other organisations and for distributing sarees during Batukamma, Christmas and Ramzan festivals. Subsidies are being provided for raw materials and marketing facilities too have been improved. A mega textile park will come up in Warangal that will provide employment opportunities to handloom workers. Textile hubs have also been proposed in Siricilla and Gadwal, he added. ‘Significant improvement in TS public health facilities’ The Telangana government has significantly developed and improved public health facilities in all government hospitals to provide better medicare to poor people which has resulted in increased confidence of public in Government hospitals. The Government has also established dialysis centers in 40 of its hospitals along with MRI, CT Scan, Digital Radiology, and Two-D-Echo facilities in many hospitals. It also increased the number of ICU units. The Governor added that 40 Basti Dawakhanas were started in Hyderabad which are providing free primary care and diagnostic tests, Governor ESL Narasimhan said. The State government’s humane approach and respect for those who have departed, was evident in the starting of mortuary vans for transporting free of cost those who succumb in hospitals. This is a unique attempt undertaken by the Telangana State Government, Narasimhan said. The Governor also spoke about how distribution of KCR Kits and the Rs 12,000 financial aid to new mothers improved institutional deliveries which in turn is ensuring the health of mothers and their babies. As of now, lakhs of mothers have been benefited by this scheme. For pregnant women under Arogya Lakshmi Scheme, a full meal a day is provided through Anganwadi centers and medicines like Iron and folic acid tablets are also distributed to them. The Kanti Velugu programme through which eye health of every individual in the State is being screened, he said, was progressing successfully. On the lines of this programme which also provides free spectacles, medicines and even surgeries when needed, the Government has proposed large scale health camps across the State to offer diagnostic tests for ear, nose, throat and dental health for people. Necessary preliminary arrangements are underway for launch of this initiative, he said. TS successfully implements administrative reforms Telangana Government has successfully implemented comprehensive and far-reaching administrative reforms to bring administration closer to people. To ensure administrative convenience and to speed-up implementation of government programmes, 21 new districts were formed while two more districts, Narayanpet and Mulugu, will be created soon, Governor ESL Narasimhan said. He said 43 revenue divisions were increased to 69 while 459 mandals were increased to 584 along with increasing the number of municipalities from 68 to 136 along with six municipal corporations in all. The number of village panchayats was increased from 8,690 to 12,751, he said. Among the initiatives was upgrading of ‘thandas’ and ‘gudems’ to village panchayats. This was a long-pending dream of people from ST communities and result was creation of 1,326 special ST village panchayats while another 1,311 village panchayats have been created in the scheduled areas. The steps have ensured that 3,000 members of ST communities are set to become sarpanches for the first time in the State. Telangana has become the only State to have created a panchayat system on such a large scale for STs. “This historical success was achieved by my government which is progressive minded,” Narasimhan said. With the firm belief that real fruits of achieving statehood will be realised only when the locals get employment opportunities, the government has formed a new Zonal System comprising seven zones and two multi zones along, to enable locals to get 95% of opportunities in all local cadre jobs, he said. With respect to maintenance of law and order, Narasimhan said the government increased the number of police commissionerates from two when the State was formed, to nine. In addition, new police sub-divisions, new circles, new police stations were also created. The number of police sub-divisions has increased from 139 to 163, circles from 688 to 717 and police stations from 712 to 814, the Governor said. TS leads by example in Agri sector Agriculture sector that languished before formation of Telangana State has witnessed a transformation following steps initiated by the State government to revive, restore and revitalise the sector. The steps taken by the government including round-the-clock power supply, ensuring timely availability of fertilizers, pesticides and seed, have come as a great relief to farmers, Governor ESL Narasimhan said. Highlighting the Rythu Bandhu and Rythu Bhima schemes, the Governor said Rythu Bandhu was designed to ensure farmers no longer had to depend on anyone for loans to begin agriculture operations. The scheme has received national and international praise, he said. “It is a matter of pride that United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organisation has praised this scheme which, several States are preparing to adopt. The scheme has now become part of national agenda of action,” he said. Similarly, the government introduced the novel Rythu Bhima Life Insurance scheme for farmers to assist families of farmers in the event of the death of the farmer, notwithstanding the circumstances. And for strengthening of the Agriculture Department, one agriculture extension officer has been appointed for every 5,000 acres while Rythu Vedikas are being constructed to provide a platform for farmers to discuss issues among themselves. The Governor also mentioned the Government’s steps to cleanse land records through a comprehensive rectification and updation programme to ensure total transparency. “This has turned out to be unique exercise, one-of-its-kind in the country which resulted in clarity regarding 94% of land ownership,” he said..