Hyderabad: Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao seems to have been badly hit by ‘Singapore mania’, deputy leader of the Congress in the Telangana Legislative Council and former minister Md Shabbir Ali said on Thursday. “He is so impressed with Singapore that now he wants to send everyone to the island country to learn lessons in development,” Mr Shabbir Ali said.
Talking to reporters here, Mr Shabbir Ali said, although Singapore is a developed nation and deserves full praise for its economic growth; its model cannot be implemented in Telangana due to various factors. Against Singapore’s size of 716.1 sq km, Telangana’s area is 114,840 sq km. While Singapore’s population is 55.99 lakh, Telangana’s population is nearly four crore. It is easier to develop smaller areas with less population, compared to large areas with a huge population, he added.
Singapore is the world’s third largest casino gambling market after Macau and Las Vegas. May be Mr Rao wants Telangana to become the gambling hub of India. He said only 61.37 per cent of Singapore’s population are citizens while the remaining 38.63 per cent were permanent residents or foreign workers/students. Nearly 23 per cent of Singaporeans are foreign born. If Mr Rao wants to adopt the Singapore model, then he must change his stand on the pre-1956 condition for nativity, the Congress leader said.
“While we can take some lessons from Singapore in economic development, it cannot be considered our sole role model. Singapore is the world’s most expensive city to live in,” he said. Providing data he added that the cost of living in Singapore is almost 260 per cent higher than Telangana. Food is costly by 161 per cent, housing by 267 per cent, clothes by 76 per cent, transportation by 523 per cent, personal care by 139 per cent and entertainment by 190 per cent.