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Centre, Telangana differ on survey

Hyderabad city and the rest of the State came to a grinding halt on Tuesday,when the mammoth household survey was held. Photo: Mohammed Yousuf

Hyderabad city and the rest of the State came to a grinding halt on Tuesday,when the mammoth household survey was held. Photo: Mohammed Yousuf  

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The Telangana government’s initiative to carry out an “intensive household survey” threatens to strain Centre-State relations as a large section of the people of Seemandhra origin fear that the data collected can be misused.

“The Union government is seized of the matter and keeping a close watch on the developments. If the situation so demands, we will make an appropriate intervention at an appropriate time. We hope that good sense prevails upon the Telangana government and steps are taken to address all apprehensions,” a senior Home Ministry official said.

The Telangana government, which recently defied the Centre’s order vesting special powers pertaining to law-and-order issues with the Governor, has maintained that the survey covering 84 lakh people is for listing out the socio-economic status of households for implementing welfare schemes effectively. The survey is being carried out to plug “leakage” in the public distribution system, social security pensions, housing and such other schemes.

The Hyderabad High Court, hearing a public interest litigation petition against the survey, gave the go-ahead for it as the State government said the survey was voluntary. However, the people of Seemandhra origin, along with Opposition parties, remain doubtful, saying it could well be a government ploy to keep them out of public welfare schemes.

In support of their claim, they cite a previous draft survey question seeking information on the origin of the respondents. The government set 1956 as the cut-off year to determine nativity — the children of those who migrated to the region after that year would not be eligible for the fee-reimbursement scheme. The question was later struck off.

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Printable version | Jan 23, 2020 10:45:48 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/centre-telangana-differ-on-survey/article6332673.ece

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