VIJAYAWADA: Major Irrigation Minister Devineni Umamaheswara Rao on Tuesday hoped that Finance Minister Arun Jaitely would make liberal allocation of funds for the Polavaram project.
Speaking to mediapersons here, he said that hectic lobbying is going on at Delhi to make the Centre see reason and advance liberal grants to the state which has not yet recovered from the trauma of bifurcation. “MPs and Ministers are doing all that is needed to seek larger allocation of funds for Polavaram,” he said, terming the allocation of Rs 100 crore in the Union budget a pittance for a project that has been declared a national one.
He dismissed as baseless the impression that is gaining ground that the relations between the TDP and the BJP are under stress following “gross injustice done to the state” in the budget. “There is no need for confrontation. Our job is to get what is rightfully ours. We will persuade and secure liberal funding. We will also make sure that the Centre keeps all promises made to the reorganised state at the time of bifurcation,” he said.
He did not attach any political significance to the tour of BJP leaders headed by two BJP state ministers. :The team is visiting to assess the degree of drought in Rayalaseema. This has got nothing to do with any subtle attempt to discredit the state government,” he said.
He reiterated the government resolve to go ahead with the Pattiseema project that would not only help the Krishna delta but also help the government save water for Rayalaseema. “We are at it. We finalised tenders for the project on February 23. This is an important project because it would meet the drinking water requirements of people in villages in the Krishna delta. “Pattiseem would only divert the flood waters of Godavari,” he pointed out.
Lashing out at YS Jaganmohan Reddy for his yatra in the capital region, Umamaheswara Rao said he had no business to criticise Chandrababu Naidu since he is A1 in 11 cases and most of them relate to how he had grabbed farmers’ lands and gifted them to industrialists for pecuniary considerations using his late father YS Rajasekhar Reddy’s position as chief minister. “You (Jagan Reddy) have taken away 29,000 acres from farmers for VANPIC and 8,844 acres for Lepakshi Knowledge Hub in Anantapur district, 14,000 acres for Brahmani steels and so on.