Hyderabad: Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC) Treasurer Gudur Narayan Reddy alleged that Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao did not represent properly the financial needs of Telangana State before the Fifteenth Finance Commission.
“The gap between the actual revenues and estimated expenditure from the financial year 2019-20 is expected to be around Rs. 1 lakh crore per annum. Therefore, Telangana needs financial assistance of at least Rs. 5 lakh crore from the Centre. However, what KCR asked for from Finance Commission was mere Rs. 50,000 crore which is not going to help the State in a longer run,” Gudur Narayana Reddy said in a media statement on Wednesday.
Gudur Narayana Reddy said that KCR missed the opportunity to present before the Finance Commission a detailed list of things required to be done by the Centre for Telangana. “Instead of being ‘expressive’, KCR tried to become ‘impressive’ and wasted the opportunity. He sought Rs. 40,169 crore as maintenance grant for the State’s lift irrigation projects and Rs. 12,722 crore grant for Mission Bhagiratha. No clarity was given on funds required for other projects and schemes. A ‘significant increase’ was sought in grants to rural and urban bodies. When you don’t specify the number, the official agencies get the liberty to fix an amount on their own,” he pointed out.
The Congress leader also slammed KCR for seeking raise in additional borrowing facility. “Telangana is already in debts of over Rs. 2.50 lakh crore which is almost 150% more than the actual revenues for one full year. If the Chief Minister is allowed to borrow more funds to bridge revenue-expenditure gap, then Telangana State will be in huge debts of over Rs. 7 lakh crore in the next five years. State Government must learn to utilise the funds in a judicious manner than resorting to huge borrowings,” he said.
Gudur Narayana Reddy also accused the Chief Minister of showing disrespect to the architect of Indian Constitution Dr. Baba Saheb Ambedkar. In his representation before the Finance Commission, KCR has alleged that the Indian Constitution was adopted with significant centripetal bias in the distribution of fiscal powers between the Centre and the States. “By saying so, KCR is trying to give an impression that Dr. Ambedkar’s approach was erroneous and inferior,” he said while adding that it was the same Constitution which has ensured the unity, integrity and cooperative federalism in the country.
The Congress leader advised KCR to shun his negative thinking towards others. “For some reasons, KCR apparently thinks that his thoughts and ideas are superior and he was above everyone. He literally hates the Constitution of India and wants to replace every Central law with his own. This approach is not good for a democracy and spirit of federalism,” he said.
Gudur Narayana Reddy ridiculed KCR’s demand seeking suitable compensation from the Centre for the implementation of Goods and Services Tax (GST). He reminded that KCR was the first Chief Minister who supported Prime Minister Narender Modi when he introduced a defective GST. He said that the GST Bill was given a nod in the Telangana Legislature without having a proper discussion. Consequently, he said now Telangana is being deprived of its due share in GST or compensation for the losses that it suffered.