The government’s decision on meeting the iron ore requirements of the Rashtriya Ispat Nigam Limited’s (RINL) steel plant in Visakhapatnam from Bayyaram mines in Khammam district drew flak from the CPI and the Telangana Rashtra Samiti.

CPI State secretary K. Narayana said the government’s decision was raising several doubts as it came at a time when the people of Khammam and Warangal districts, cutting across political lines, were pitching for a steel factory in the area.

Conditions were favourable for locating the factory in Bayyaram given the availability of coal reserves for firing the steel plant as also the water resources in the area.

In a letter addressed to Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy, Dr. Narayana requested him to explore the options for setting up a public sector steel plant at Bayyaram as it would go a long way in developing the backward area and generating jobs for locals.

TRS floor leader in the Assembly E. Rajender strongly opposed the proposal claiming it was another attempt to divert the resources of Telangana for the development of coastal Andhra region.

‘Government indifferent’

The decision to transport iron ore from Khammam in spite of the strong movement for separate statehood reflected the government’s indifference in ensuring the development of Telangana region, he said.

K. Kavitha, founder leader of Telangana Jagruthi, while describing the decision as an instance of ‘arrogance of Seemandhra leaders’, said the Bayyaram mines ought to have been handed over to Singareni Collieries. With water and coal already available in the region, a steel plant could be established in Telangana, she added. Congress MP Ponnam Prabhakar said he would oppose the government’s move.

Bayyaram mines ought to have been handed over to Singareni Collieries, says K. Kavitha