Telangana

We welcome Rahul Gandhi, let him learn the best practices of Telangana: KTR

HYDERABAD, TELANGANA, 05/05/2022: Minister for Information Technology and Municipal Administration and Telangana Rashtra Samithi working president, K.T. Rama Rao speaks to ‘The Hindu’ in an exclusive interview at his camp office at Pragathi Bhavan in Hyderabad on Thursday, May 05, 2022. Photo: NAGARA GOPAL / The Hindu

HYDERABAD, TELANGANA, 05/05/2022: Minister for Information Technology and Municipal Administration and Telangana Rashtra Samithi working president, K.T. Rama Rao speaks to ‘The Hindu’ in an exclusive interview at his camp office at Pragathi Bhavan in Hyderabad on Thursday, May 05, 2022. Photo: NAGARA GOPAL / The Hindu | Photo Credit: NAGARA GOPAL

Rahul Gandhi should spend his time in Telangana learning about the best practices here to implement the same for the welfare of farmers in Congress-ruled States, TRS working president K.T. Rama Rao suggests in an interview to The Hindu on the eve of Rahul Gandhi’s visit to Telangana.

Taking a dig at the local Congress leadership, KTR offers himself for the ‘drug test challenge’ if Rahul Gandhi is also willing for the test during his visit to the State.

Q: What is your take on Rahul Gandhi’s visit to Telangana for the Farmers Struggle Meet in Warangal?

He is welcome to visit Telangana despite his hollow empathy for Telangana farmers. I ask Mr. Gandhi to show me a model of governance that is better than Telangana. Do the Congress governments in Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan offer Rythu Bandhu, provide free power for 24 hours or have fulfilled the farm loan waiver promise? The kind of interventions brought in by the TRS government for farmers have not been done in any State in Independent India and I say this with utmost authority. So to come and make empty promises is ridiculous.

Why is Rahul Gandhi being denied entry into Osmania University?

Ans: Osmania University Vice-Chancellor knows better. May be he thought Mr. Gandhi’s academic and intellectual credentials are not good enough to meet students. Anyway, what is his relevance to the university and how qualified he is to address students? Is he a qualified professor? His visit is to stir a hornet’s nest, indulge in nonsensical rhetoric and to make a political statement. His visit is not academic but political. Enough damage has been done on campuses across the country. Look at JNU and how divided it is.

TRS has been very critical of the Gandhi family recently?

Ans: We are critical of everyone for political reasons but we maintain dignity and decency. Look at our Chief Minister who showed political decency to applaud Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy for bringing in Aarogyasri scheme. Recently when Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma made some unsavoury comments against Rahul Gandhi, our CM KCR condemned the disgraceful comments.

We expect the same dignity from other parties. TPCC chief Revanth Reddy indulges in abusive rhetoric against the Chief Minister day in and day out. So do the BJP leaders. We have to repay in the same coin.

You have been very critical of Prime Minister Narendra Modi as well?

Ans: Telangana is nowhere in the ‘mann’ of Modi or his ‘Mann ki Baat.’ In fact, Modi has been insulting Telangana’s birth itself repeatedly. PM is the embodiment of the Indian government and I have the right to criticise him when he failed to deliver. He has been a huge let-down. Eight quarters of dismal economic performance and COVID lockdown resulting in economic slowdown proved that flawed policies like demonetisation and unimplementable GST were the real reasons. Modi destroyed the economy so much that the country is hurt now with the highest inflation in 30 years, the highest unemployment rate in 45 years and the highest LPG prices in the world. We will continue to expose him. The religious rhetoric and polarisation tactics will not work in Telangana.

Look at Bandi Sanjay Kumar’s padayatra in Mahabubnagar. His yatra reminds me of a classical Telugu novel (Asamardhudi Padayatra) which can be translated as the ‘Life journey of an Inefficient.’ BJP has not given a single rupee for the Palamuru Ranga Reddy Lift Irrigation Project and no money for any railway line there. How can they raise the political heat without doing anything? People are wise enough to see through their designs.

But MIM accused of polarisation is a close ally of TRS when you talk about BJP’s polarisation?

Ans: There is a rumour that Asaduddin Owaisi is helping the BJP win some States by dividing votes. I won’t indulge in rumour-mongering but if you look at it positively, we ensured that Owaisi did not spread in Telangana like he is spreading in other States. Is that not our achievement?

Youngsters seem to be moving towards BJP is the narrative. What is your take?

Ans: Politics is all about giving hope to youngsters. I promise that their future is safe with TRS and its policies. Every parent and kids look for a better future and BJP has failed miserably on this front. Can the BJP infuse such positive thoughts? When 65% of the population is less than 35 years, how many of these come to BJP meetings? We can’t generalise.

Congress believes KTR will be the face of 2023 elections?

Ans: Our Chief Minister is in the pink of health and I have repeatedly said that TRS will fight the elections with his face. Revanth Reddy or Bandi Sanjay will not be taken as serious alternatives to a champion like KCR and there ends the game for those parties.


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Printable version | May 13, 2022 8:32:22 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/telangana/we-welcome-rahul-gandhi-let-him-learn-the-best-practices-of-telangana-ktr/article65386033.ece