His actions tantamount to scuttling the project, says Rytanga Samakhya president
TDP president N. Chandrababu Naidu on Thursday drew sharp criticism from the Andhra Pradesh Rytanga Samakhya for his stand on the Indirasagar Project vis-à-vis allotment of tenders. Addressing a media conference here, the samakhya president Maganti Sitarama Swamy found fault with Mr. Naidu writing to the Chief Minister seeking cancellation of tenders called for the project in the wake of allegations of TRS president K. Chandrasekhara Rao having stakes in the contract.
It was quite unfortunate that Mr. Naidu was playing into the hands of Telangana people while allegedly ignoring the irrigation interests of the farmers from the Seemandhra region for his political survival. His action amounted to scuttling of the project, Mr. Sitarama Swamy said. He said the Samakhya has decided to enlist the support from all political parties for early completion of the project beyond political considerations.
Recalling the government's move to reduce the ayacut in the Godavari delta in the rabi by 50 per cent in view of the dwindling water levels in the Godavari river, Mr. Sitarama Swamy said the situation of this sort could be averted if water was impounded by way of constructing the dam across the river. Yerneni Nagendranath, honoury president of the samakhya expressed serious concern over the UPA's ‘step-motherly' attitude towards paddy growers in revising the minimum support price for paddy.
Substantiating his charge, Mr. Nagendranath recalled that the government had hiked the MSP for wheat by Rs. 160 while effecting a nominal increase of Rs. 80 for paddy.
He criticised Union Minister for Agricultural Sharad Pawar for his reported observation that it was not possible to implement the recommendations of the Swaminadhan Commission with regard to fixation of minimum support price for paddy. Citing a letter written by the minister to the Consortium of Indian Farmers Associations (CIFA), Mr. Nagendranadh said it was unfortunate for Mr. Pawar to comment that “Prescribing an increase of at least 50 per cent on (cultivation) cost (as recommended by the Swaminadhan Commission) may distort market”. In the letter, the minister stated that the recommendations of the Swaminadhan Commission were not accepted by the government on the ground that the MSP was recommended by the Commission for Agricultural Price and Cost (CACP) basing on `objective criteria and considering variety of relevant factors'.