Finance minister T. Harish Rao addressed a press conference at Pragathi Bhavan. (Photo: DC)
Hyderabad: The Cabinet meeting, chaired by Chief Minister K.Chandrashekar Rao on Thursday, decided to extend the Dalit Bandhu scheme to 1.3 lakh families across the state in the second phase in 118 of the state’s 119 Assembly constituencies, having covered Huzurabad in 2021 and 2022.
The Cabinet also approved a slew of schemes — ‘Gruha Lakshmi’ to give Rs 3 lakh to each BPL landowner to build a house, writing off loans of previous housing schemes, second phase of sheep distribution and distribution of podu land pattas.
The government said the 125-feet Dr B.R. Ambedkar statue along NTR Marg will be unveiled on April 14, and the Secretariat and Martyrs Memorial would be inaugurated by June 2, Telangana Formation Day.
In the Cabinet meeting held on Thursday at Pragathi Bhavan, the government approved to extend the Dalit Bandhu scheme to 1,100 families each in 118 constituencies totalling 1,29,800 families. The remaining 200 beneficiaries are kept under "Chief Secretary's quota" who will extend the benefit on the directions of the government.
The Cabinet also decided to hold the Dalit Bandhu celebrations on August 16 each year to coincide with the launch of the scheme on August 16, 2021 in Huzurabad.
The Cabinet also approved launching a housing scheme ‘Gruha Lakshmi’ to extend Rs 3 lakh financial assistance to the BPL families, who own land for the purpose of constructing their own houses.
"Four lakh beneficiaries will be covered under the first phase. The government will extend Rs 3 lakh in three phases to each beneficiary as a grant who will receive Rs 1 lakh in each phase in their bank accounts. They can utilise the amount to construct the house as per their choice," finance minister T. Harish Rao stated after the Cabinet meeting.
"Previous governments used to give just Rs 40,000 to Rs 90,000 to each beneficiary, that too as a bank loan. The BRS government is giving it as a grant and they don't need to repay," he said.
Under the Gruha Lakshmi scheme, 3,000 houses will be built in each of the 119 Assembly constituencies in the first phase, while another 43,000 houses will be kept under the 'state quota' which will be allocated by the government depending on the situation and applications received from various sections. Harish Rao said the government had sanctioned Rs 12,000 crore for this scheme.
The Cabinet also approved waiving Rs 4,000 crore loan arrears of 30 lakh beneficiaries of previous governments housing schemes who failed to repay the amount, he informed.
The Cabinet also approved the distribution of sheep under the second phase to the Yadava/ Kuruma community. Of the 7.31 lakh identified beneficiaries, 50 per cent were covered in the first phase from 2018 and the rest will be covered in the second phase. The government sanctioned Rs 4,463 crore for this scheme.
The Cabinet directed the officials to start the distribution from April and complete by August-end. District collectors have been asked to select the beneficiaries.
In addition, the Cabinet approved the distribution of podu lands over an extent of four lakh acres to 1.55 lakh tribals in the first phase. "The process of identification of beneficiaries is going on. So far, 1,55,393 beneficiaries were identified who will be distributed 4,00,903 acres. The patta documents have been printed and ready for distribution. The process of identification of more beneficiaries will continue," Harish Rao said.
The Cabinet has decided to unveil 125-ft tall Dr B.R. Ambedkar statue, considered to be the country’s tallest Ambedkar statue, set up adjacent to the new Secretariat complex on April 14 on the occasion of his birth anniversary. It was decided to mobilise lakhs of Dalits from all the districts for the inaugural event and hold a public meeting after inauguration, which will be addressed by Chief Minister K.Chandrashekar Rao.
Harish Rao stated that the inauguration dates of the new Secretariat and Telangana Martyrs Memorial are yet to be decided. But he said that their inauguration will be done before June 2 as the works have reached completion stage.
The Cabinet also decided to give pattas to people who constructed houses on government lands under GO 58 and GO 59. The cut-off date has been extended from June 2, 2014 to June 2, 2020. Those who constructed houses until June 2, 2020 will be given the last and final opportunity to submit applications for a month.
While pattas will be given free of cost to BPL categories under GO 58, existing market rates will be collected from others under GO 59.
Harish Rao stated that the Cabinet approved Rs 25 crore for the construction of each guest house in Kasi and Sabarimala for the convenience of pilgrims from Telangana.
He said the government has decided to procure paddy from the farmers for MSP in the ongoing rabi season whether the Centre procures it or not. He said the government is planning to open procurement centres in April last week at village-level for the purpose.