HYDERABAD: Health minister Eatala Rajender on Friday defended his company’s moves to own assigned lands and use them to expand the state of the art poultry industry in Achampet village of Medak district through a legal channel.
In a strong response to a few TV channels airing stories describing him as encroacher of lands assigned for the poor, the minister categorically said he discussed in detail with Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao’s principal secretary S. Narsing Rao about his requirement of land for his poultry industry and allotment of the neighbouring assigned lands for this purpose.
“We even made an official request to the Telangana Industrial Infrastructure Corporation to acquire assigned lands which are unfit for agriculture and sell the same to us,” he said.
The minister revealed that TSIIC chairman Narasimha Reddy was also aware of the developments. The officials suggested that the assignees may surrender their land to the government which in turn could allocate the same to the industry. Following this, several farmers wrote to the tehsildar surrendering their lands, he pointed out.
The health minister said several infrastructure projects like ring roads and pharma city came up on assigned lands which were acquired by the government. The government gave incentives equal to the investment of the industries in several cases, he said adding that he did not seek any incentive but only land that was never put to use by the assignees ever since it was allotted to them in 1994.
Rajendar said he would not degrade the minister post but would not hesitate to leave it to safeguard his self-respect, apparently taking a dig at the chief minister who equated the CM post with a chappal, inviting widespread criticism.
Rajendar also said he made wealth with sheer hard work and investments in poultry industry unlike some others who made fortunes out of nowhere. “There are people, who roamed on scooters, made hundreds of crores of rupees,” he said reminding all of the Opposition’s similar allegations against the Chief Minister.
The health minister said he never misused his position to protect his assets and the Chief Minister was also aware that a plot in Banjara Hills he purchased with Rs 5 crore was still under litigation. None raised any questions on my income when I spent crores of rupees to bring youth out of jails and took care of them during the struggle for separate Telangana, he said and offered himself to the chief minister to face any inquiry into his assets....