Andhra Pradesh Finance Minister Buggana Rajendranath has accused the former Telugu Desam Party (TDP) government of financial indiscipline and said that the present government has to do damage control because of the same.
"The previous government has left behind a legacy of huge debts stemming from off-budget borrowings and loans from various corporations coupled with extravagant spendings and clearing the dues of their favoured contractors while mounting the dues to public services and other utilities," Rajendranath told reporters here on Friday.
Speaking about the reports, in a section of media about the State Bank of India (SBI) writing a letter regarding a loan taken by the Andhra Pradesh Power Finance Corporation, he said that it was part of regular correspondence.
"The ratings will be given by agencies like Crisil and Brickwork who have their own basis of assessing the creditworthiness of a company. In January, Crisil gave A+ while Brickwork gave A- and the AP Power Finance Corporation did approach SBI for loans, and there was a sharp rise in guarantees by the state by 2018 and that period was that of TDP governance," he said.
Continuing his attack, he said the outstanding guarantees by the state rose from Rs 9,665 cores in 2017 to Rs 35,964 cores in 2018 under the rule of the previous TDP government.
"Chandrababu Naidu-Yanamala Rama Krishnudu (former CM and FM) combination has always played truant with the state finances and it was the previous government which went out of the way to draw supplementary grants, had taken loans from all the corporations including Civil Supplies and has the dubious distinction of drawing Rs 5,000 crore on a single day," he said.
He also alleged that huge amounts were paid to TDP's favoured contractors while public utility bills like mid-day meals, fees reimbursement, land acquisition, DISCOMS, hospital subsidies, outsourcing and employees' salaries among others, were kept pending.
"The pending bills and amounts drawn before elections were piled upon us and their mismanagement was carried forward and has fallen on us to clear. Now it is the same TDP leaders who are talking about financial management," Rajendranath said.
He also accused the former TDP government of signing 36 power purchase agreements (PPAs) in the space of 45 days for a period of 25 years knowing full well that the power prices would fall in the future.
"The Leader of Opposition stating that we are taking the state backwards is ridiculous as he has left behind a financial mess which we are trying to clean up and it takes time to undo the damage he has done and the Rs 65,000 crore debt and its spillover effect he forced on us," Rajendranath said.
The finance minister said it was too early to judge the financial situation of the Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy government which is just four months old and added that it will take at least one year to gauge its true performance.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)