Minister for Tribal Welfare, P. Balaraju, on Sunday said the State government gave top priority for farmers' welfare and as part of it, paddy seed would be supplied on 50 per cent subsidy to farmers for the ensuing rabi season. Also, kharif crop loans taken between April 1 and September 15 were rescheduled for payment in 2011 with ‘pavala’ interest. In his AP Formation Day message, the Minister said that to help drought-affected farmers, about 3200 quintals of paddy, green gram, black gram seed had been distributed to farmers on 50 per cent subsidy. More than 13,000 paddy cultivating farmers had been extended insurance cover.

The government had taken up major irrigation projects like Uttaraandhra Sujala Sravanthi to ensure irrigation and drinking water to the people in north coastal districts. Administrative sanction had already been accorded to this Rs.7214-crore project with a potential to irrigate eight lakh acres of land, the Minister said. An important development was the decision to develop coffee plantation on one lakh acres with an investment of Rs.349 crores. The project, which was started this year, would continue till 2018

Referring to industrial development, the Minister said that under private public partnership pharma city was established with an investment of Rs.350 crores near Parvada. So far it provided employment to about 5,000 people.

The government had also approved a Special Economic Zone on about 9,000 acres in Achyutapuram and Rambilli mandals.

Dialysis units

Under PPP, ten dialysis units were established in the KGH here. They would start functioning within a few days, the Minister said. He claimed that steps had been taken to tackle the problem of swine flu in the district.

Earlier the Minister unfurled the national tri-colour and distributed economic assets.

Mayor, P. Janardana Rao, MLAs -- Dronamaraju Srinivas, P. Rameshbabu, Ch. Venkatramaiah, Collector J. Syamala Rao, VUDA Vice-Chairman V.N. Vishnu, GVMC Commissioner B. Sreedhar, Joint Collector S. Satyanarayana and other attended the function.

At the Greater Visakha City Congress Committee office, floral tributes were paid by the Congress leaders to Amarajeevi Potti Sriramulu who made the supreme sacrifice for formation of a separate State.

Former chairman of VUDA P.S.N. Raju presided over the function. Mayor P. Janardana Rao, MLA Dronamraju Srinivas, corporators K. Venkat Rao, Pilla Kannababu, G.V.Ramani and other Congress leaders attended.

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