BRS, Opposition geared up for last House session
DECCAN CHRONICLE | L. Venkat Ram Reddy
HYDERABAD: The Monsoon Session of the Telangana state Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council, which will be the last before the state goes to polls, is set to start on Thursday, with the BRS, BJP and the Congress looking to raise controversial issues to take one another to task, in the run-up to the elections.
Among key issues that are expected to come up for discussion is free power for agriculture, TSPSC paper leaks, Dharani portal problems and unfulfilled promises of the BRS government, including crop loan waiver, 2BHK houses and unemployment allowance, among others.
There is also an element of suspense ahead of the opening session, which will begin at 11.30 am, on who will represent the Kothagudem Assembly constituency, given that the High Court declared the election of BRS MLA Vanama Venkateswara Rao invalid. The court had declared his nearest rival, Jalagam Venkat Rao, also of the BRS, as an MLA in his place.
Venkat Rao met Legislature secretary V. Narasimha Charyulu soon after the High Court gave its verdict last week, requesting that the court order be complied with and he be recognised as a legislator, instead of Vanama, who won on a Congress ticket and later joined the BRS.
However, a decision in this regard is yet to be taken.
On Wednesday, Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao held a meeting with ministers and senior BRS leaders at the Pragathi Bhavan to finalise the party’s strategy for the House proceedings.
Party sources said Rao is placing a huge significance on the session, given that it will be the last in his current tenure as the Chief Minister. He is seeking to highlight all the welfare schemes and developmental programmes implemented by the BRS government in the past nine years, while emphasising the recent decisions to regularise the services of VRAs and absorb TSRTC employees into the state government with the merger of TSRTC.
An announcement by Rao on crop waiver a day before the session is also being viewed in political circles as a strategy to pre-empt the Opposition from targeting the BRS government for failing to implement a crop insurance scheme, which was promised in the run-up to the 2018 Assembly polls.
Sources said that BRS is banking on free power for agriculture as a major issue to target the Congress, which made statements about three hours of free power being sufficient and dismissing a need for round-the-clock free power supply to farmers.
The ruling party will also target the BJP for asking states to install meters for agriculture pumpsets.
The Opposition Congress and the BJP, on the other hand, have decided to corner the government on the issue of the Dharani portal, crop insurance scheme, mismanagement of floods, failure to extend compensation to farmers and people in flood-hit areas, TSPSC paper leakage and failure to provide government jobs.