Chief Minister conducts eight-hour long interaction with leaders and representatives of the weavers

Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy on Saturday announced release of Rs.169-crore package for weavers. The announcement came after a marathon eight-hour long face-to-face interaction with the elected representatives and leaders of the handlooms and powerloom weavers, former Ministers and legislators from all parties at Jubilee Hall.

The Chief Minister promised to come out with a better package shortly. The interface with the leaders and representatives of the weavers was attended by Union Minister of State for Textiles Panabaka Lakshmi, Handlooms and Textiles Minister G. Prasad Kumar and senior bureaucrats of the Central and State governments.

The meeting saw some protests from the opposition parties, particularly the TDP leaders, who demanded that the media should be allowed to cover the event. They were seen arguing with the Chief Minister on the issue.

Addressing the gathering, Mr. Kiran Reddy announced Rs.50 crore towards loan waiver that would benefit 1,877 individual weavers and 191 weavers cooperative societies. He said Rs.50 crore would be given to APCO towards working capital.

The Chief Minister announced a slew of financial assistance under integrated handloom development scheme, power tariff subsidy claims of powerloom units. All these totalling about Rs.169 crore would be released in the next two or three days, the Chief Minister said. He said the points made by the elected representatives and weaver’s leaders had been noted and would be given due consideration. He said 125 posts of Handloom Development Officers will be filled and the Public Service Commission will notify and recruitment will be done at the earliest.

He hinted that a separate bank for the weavers was also under consideration.