Hyderabad: Telangana Congress chief A Revanth Reddy strongly criticised the move of the Election Commission of India (ECI) to authorise the disbursement of the Rythu Bandhu assistance scheme funds to farmers, just a few days ahead of the upcoming Assembly elections in the state on November 30.
“The fevicol bond between the BJP-led Centre and the BRS is made evident once again with this development. KCR is attempting to win by spending public money. The move is intended to influence the outcome of the elections,” he remarked.
He also cited the IT, and ED raids on Congress candidates as another example of the nexus between the BRS and the BJP.
According to the officials, over 65 lakh farmers will receive direct bank account deposits totaling approximately Rs 7300 crore over the next few days.
The BRS-led Telangana government recently wrote to the ECI requesting permission to pay outstanding dearness allowance (DA) to state government employees and to disburse amounts related to Rythu Bandhu assistance and crop loan waiver to farmers, all in accordance with the Model Code of Conduct.
Subsequently, it has been reported that the EC only approved the payment of the Rythu Bandhu sum.
The Congress had earlier complained to ECI and Telangana CEO Vikas Raj, asking them to order the state government to withhold the funds from being released prior to the elections on the grounds that doing so would sway voters.
Ahead of the elections, chief minister K Chandrashekhar Rao in the election manifesto declared that the BRS would progressively increase Rythu Bandhu assistance over the next five years, from the current level of Rs 10,000 per acre to Rs 16,000 per acre annually.
In its manifesto, the Congress also unveiled a similar plan, guaranteeing farmers an annual payment of Rs 15,000.