Hyderabad: The ruling TRS on Wednesday strongly pitched for the States being taken into confidence by the Centre before finalising mega infrastructure projects proposed to be taken up in the country over the next five years. Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Tuesday unveiled plans for mega infrastructure projects with an investment of Rs 102 lakh crore by 2024-25, with the Centre, States and the private sector to share the capital expenditure in a 39:39:22 formula.
Further, the party has proposed a Southern industrial corridor between Hyderabad, Chennai, and Bengaluru on the lines of the Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor to promote industrial development in the States of Karnataka, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. TRS working president and Minister KT Rama Rao, in an informal interaction with mediapersons at Telangana Bhavan on Wednesday, demanded that the Centre must take all the States into confidence to sanction such mega infrastructure projects judiciously, rather than allocating them to States with similar political interests. “Economically stronger States like Telangana must be supported by the Centre to ensure a stronger economy for the nation. If the Centre decides otherwise, it will have severe impact on national economy,” he observed.
Proposing the Southern industrial corridor, Rama Rao felt that the corridor will attract immediate investments due to conducive atmosphere prevailing in all four States and thus, will boost national economy due to industrial development. He pointed out that he stoutly opposed the Centre’s decision to establish a defence corridor in Bundelkhand as Bengaluru and Hyderabad had a good ecosystem due to presence of defence institutions for the past a few decades. Despite a request from the State for sanction of the defence corridor, the Centre is yet to respond.
Kakatiya Textile Park
The Minister emphasised the need for mega industrial parks in the country to compete with countries like China and boost its economy. While Telangana government took up Kakatiya Mega Textile Park in Warangal, the Centre had recently proposed establishment of 12 new mega textile parks across the country and asked the State government to submit its proposals in this regard. “Instead of a new textile park, we requested the Centre to approve Kakatiya Mega Textile Park as a joint venture between the Centre and the State. We are awaiting for a response,” he added.
Responding to a question on Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), the TRS working president reiterated that the party had made its stand clear in Parliament and strongly felt that it will not affect the party’s future prospects in the State. “People in the country, including Telangana State, are clever enough to understand our opposition to the Act. It need not be looked into as a religious issue. We opposed it because it was biased and against the Constitutional spirit. We would have voted in favour, if the BJP government did not differentiate between refugees on the basis of religion,” he explained. He said with regard to implementation of National Register of Citizens (NRC) and National Population Register (NPR), the Chief Minister was consulting experts and will take an appropriate decision at an appropriate time.
No differences with AP
Rama Rao ruled out any differences with Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy following the latter’s decision to increase the drawing capacity of Pothireddypadu head regulator and Srisailam Right Main Canal (SRMC) to 80,000 cusecs from the present capacity of 44,000 cusecs. “Chief Minister Chandrashekhar Rao believes in ‘Love Thy Neighbour’ and we have cordial relations with all our neighbouring States. Thus, we could complete Kaleshwaram Lift Irrigation Scheme. We will resolve any differences through mutual cooperation,” he said. He pointed out that Chief Minister Chandrashekhar Rao maintained cordial relations with Andhra Pradesh even during the rule of N Chandrababu Naidu.
The Minister stated that both Telangana and Andhra Pradesh governments did not take any decision with regard to the proposal for inter-linking Krishna and Godavari Rivers. Similarly, the State government is yet to take a decision on acquisition of a port in neighbouring Andhra Pradesh, for its operations. He stated that the proposal to establish a dry port at Nakrekal was still alive and discussions were on with private landowners for necessary land. He also felt that water aerodromes will be beneficial for Telangana State after completion of its irrigation projects, rather than small airports.