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Eatala stripped off health portfolio, Telangana CM takes charge

Collector confirms encroachment of land by firm owned by Minister’s kin

May 01, 2021 03:23 pm | Updated May 02, 2021 12:05 am IST - HYDERABAD:

Eatala Rajendar

Eatala Rajendar

On a day of fast-paced developments, Minister for Health Eatala Rajender was stripped of his portfolio just 24 hours after a few beneficiaries of assigned lands to weaker sections at Atchampet village in Masaipet Mandal of Medak district complained to Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao that their lands were encroached by the Minister for expansion of a poultry farm and hatchery belonging to the latter.

A press communique released from Raj Bhavan said: “On the advice of the Chief Minister of Telangana, the Governor has approved the transfer of Medical, Health and Family Welfare portfolio from Eatela Rajender to the Chief Minister with immediate effect.”

A board of Jamuna Hatcheries Pvt. Ltd. at Atchampet village of Masaipet mandal in Medak district.

A board of Jamuna Hatcheries Pvt. Ltd. at Atchampet village of Masaipet mandal in Medak district.

Highly placed sources said that a letter from the Chief Minister’s office was sent to the Governor’s office on Saturday morning. The e-file was immediately forwarded to Governor Tamilisai Soundararajan, who is in Puducherry as the in-charge Lt Governor. The Governor immediately approved the file and sent it back to Hyderabad.

The ouster of Mr. Rajender topped a day of significant political developments which unfolded with Medak Collector A. Harish leading a team of revenue officials to survey the lands in question and digitise measurements in the hatchery at Atchampet. Within a few hours, the Collector who inspected land records in the tahsildar office at Moosapet told media that the existence of assigned lands in the custody of Mr. Rajender was confirmed.

Isolated in party

Meanwhile, Mr. Rajender confined himself to his palatial house at Shamirpet here throughout the day as his supporters from his constituency of Huzurabad converged in large numbers. None of his Cabinet colleagues, MLAs and MLCs of TRS reportedly tried to contact him. Some of the MLAs like Rasamai Balkishan who were regular to his house were not seen.

Mr. Rajender told media persons that his portfolio might have been withdrawn to extend better health care services to people. He said the Chief Minister had the authority to allot or withdraw any subject from a Minister.

He said he was targeted in a planned manner with the aim to defame him. He hoped the truth will be out soon. Such acts will not be appreciated by people. The perpetrators will pay a price in future, he said.

Enquiry commenced at  Acchampet and Hakimpet villages in Masaipet village in Medak district on Saturday.

Enquiry commenced at Acchampet and Hakimpet villages in Masaipet village in Medak district on Saturday.

He refused to bridge the gap with the Chief Minister saying he will respond after the full report was out. Jamuna Hatcheries which is involved in the construction of hatchery, in a release, denied that it had grabbed land. The company purchased land to build 12 breeder laying farm sheds in addition to two brooding farms with utmost biosecurity standards in seven survey numbers of Atchampet. Erection of a poultry feed plant was in the final stages in another survey number in adjoining Hakimpet.

Second minister to go

Incidentally, Mr. Eatela is the second Health Minister to have been sacked from the post. On January 25, 2015, the then health minister in the first TRS government T. Rajaiah was asked to resign in similar fashion. Dr. Rajaiah was the Deputy Chief Minister and Health Minister too but had to go because of alleged failure to tackle the challenge of swine flu that had claimed 22 lives. He also faced allegations of corruption in the departmental affairs.

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