Getting down to serious business, Chief Minister of Telangana K. Chandrasekhar Rao has said that an inquiry would be ordered to expose the housing scam in the new State and vowed to book people’s representatives, officials and middlemen involved in alleged irregularities.

According to the statistics of the weaker section housing scheme undertaken by successive governments since 1983 till date, 42 lakh houses had been constructed while five lakh were in semi-finished stage and 8-lakh more were sanctioned. This alone took the number of houses sanctioned to 55 lakh from 1983 onwards, he said.

As per the 2011 census, there were 84.21 lakh households in Telangana. “The number of houses taken up under various schemes will mean that more than 50 per cent of the population in Telangana are covered under the housing schemes,” he said. He pointed out that despite this, there was a spate of applications for new houses.

“Where have all these houses gone. I will hold an all-party meeting shortly and furnish district and mandal-wise statistics to bring out the truth. We will order a probe into the scandal and punish every one, including politicians involved in it,” he told the Assembly during the motion of thanks to Governor’s address on Friday.

He reiterated his government’s commitment to construct two-bedroom houses for all weaker sections and flats for the slum dwellers in the twin cities and urban areas in Telangana. “We will seek Central funding between Rs. 5,000 crore and 10,000 crore to take up the housing programme,” he added.

Ration cards scam

Mr. Rao said equally intriguing was the issuance of ration cards to various sections of the society. He said as per the 2011 census, there were 84,20,662 families, but the number of white ration cards issued were 91,94,880. “Where are these ration cards,” he wondered pointing out that an additional 15.07 lakh pink ration cards were also issued which took the number of cards in Telangana alone to over 1.07 crore. “How can we have 22-lakh additional cards than the number of families,” the Chief Minister asked adding that he would consult the all-party leaders to tackle the situation.

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