HYDERABAD: If his Telangana counterpart K Chandrasekhar Rao is taking his cue from Tamil Nadu in bringing reforms in policing in the newly-ormed State, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu has also decided to follow in the footsteps of TN Chief Minister Jayalalitaa in implementing populist schemes such as ‘Amma Canteens’.
Naidu, once poster-boy for reforms, who has been depending on populist schemes to win over the people of the State ever since his party had witnessed defeat in 2004 polls, on Friday decided to set up ‘NTR Canteens’ across the State to provide food items to commoners at very cheaper prices, similar to ‘Amma Canteens’ being run in Tamil Nadu.
The AP government also decided to provide generic and allopathic medicines to plebian at cheaper prices. The AP Cabinet, which met here on Friday under the leadership of Naidu, gave its nod to several landmark decisions and populist schemes, which include these two.
Briefing the mediapersons about the decisions taken by the Cabinet, AP IT, Information and Public Relations Minister Palle Raghunadha Reddy said the government had set up a sub-committee to gather information from the Tamil Nadu and other States to implement the ‘NTR Canteens’ scheme as well as to provide generic medicines to commoners at cheaper prices.
According to sources, as TN Chief Minister Jayalalithaa is successfully implementing ‘Amma Canteens’ scheme in her State by offering idlis at Rs 1 per piece and lunch at Rs 5, the AP government is also planning to follow the same scheme in AP.
As already reported in these columns, in another landmark decision, the AP Cabinet decided to henceforth allot sand quarrying leases to women self-help groups and Andhra Pradesh Mineral Development Corporation (APMDC) to end politicians-backed contractors regime in the sand quarrying sector.
“We have decided to allot sand reaches to DWACRA women to end mafia regime and also to prevent illegal sand quarrying, which led to loss of revenue to the exchequer,” Raghunatha Reddy said.
“Henceforth government would lease out feasible sand-bearing areas to directly to women self-help groups and also to the APMDC to undertake quarrying and selling of sand,” Reddy said.