ANDHRA PRADESH

Former TDP MP criticises Congress on irrigation projects

NALGONDA, JUNE 3. The former MP of the Telugu Desam Party (TDP), Gutta Sukhender Reddy, has charged the Congress Government with having no "clarity" about ongoing irrigation projects in the drought-hit Nalgonda district.

Speaking to reporters in the TDP office here on Thursday, he objected to the Alimineti Madhava Reddy project and the Sri Ram Sagar Project (in its second stage) being classified as pending projects. The TDP Government, he said, had been determined to complete both within two years. "But the Congress Government is saying it will take five years to complete them," he said.

Mr. Sukhender Reddy demanded that the Nalgonda MP, Suravaram Sudhakar Reddy, take the initiative to extend the Kalvakurthy Scheme to Munugode via Dindi. "The State Secretary of the CPI had demanded the same in his pada yatra. As his party is now an ally of the ruling Congress, he must make sure the demand is fulfilled," he said.

Expressing concern over the spate of suicides by farmers in the State, Mr. Sukhender Reddy said the Government was not in a position to accept the fact that 250 farmers had committed suicide in the last fortnight. "The Congress must clarify what is in store for debt-ridden farmers," he said. In the light of the Agriculture Minister's statement that the administration would only offer counselling through the farmer helpline, he demanded that the Government make a clear statement on the issue.

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