Business Standard

KCR slams Modi government over river interlinking, farmers


Press Trust of India Karimnagar
Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao said today the NDA government's decision of interlinking the Godavari and Cauvery rivers was taken with an eye on the ensuing Karnataka Assembly polls.

He also criticised the Modi government for "neglecting" farmers.

Union Water Resources Minister Nitin Gadkari recently said his ministry has decided to transfer surplus water from the Godavari river to Krishna, to Pennar river (Karnataka) and finally to Cauvery.

Addressing a conference of the mandal level Farmers Coordination Committee here, Rao said his government is all set implement a scheme under which cultivators would get Rs 4,000 per acre as farm input from April.

"They (the Centre) could not clearly spell out our share in the Godavari river. They appoint tribunals for that (for river water sharing). See neighbouring China. They are taking water from the Yangtze river up to Mongolia and North China, about 1,400 km away," he said.

"Have they (the Centre) got tired doing such things? No. Now have they started Godavari-Cauvery interlinking. What is the drama and conspiracy behind that move?

"Karnataka is going for elections. So, drama began. Why the BJP didn't attempt this (Godavari-Cauvery interlinking) soon after they came to power (in 2014)?," the chief minister asked.

The CM questioned why the Union Budget, which was pegged at Rs 24 lakh crore, failed to provide Rs 2 lakh crore exclusively for farmers.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi did not announce additional Rs 2,000 towards minimum support price (MSP) for farmers, he said.

"The way salaries of employees are rising and rates of all goods are increasing, in the same way paddy rates (selling prices from farmers), too, should increase.

"The Centre is completely neglecting farmers. They should not be allowed to rest peacefully," he said, lashing out at the BJP-led government.

He said farmers of the country will benefit only when they unite and fight for their rights. The Telangana farmers would lead such a movement if necessary.

Meanwhile, Rao said his government was mulling to establish food processing units at the mandal level.

He said the Farmers Coordination Committees would see that agriculturists get MSP for their agricultural produce.

"The main motto of these committees is to provide quality seeds and ensure MSP for farm produce. The Telangana government is ready to (financially) help the committees at the state level to ensure their smooth running," he added.

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First Published: Feb 26 2018 | 10:20 PM IST

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