TDP Govt. Playing Havoc With Lives Of Poor In Name Of Progress  

AP Leader of Opposition YS Jagan Mohan Reddy - Sakshi Post

Aditya College Centre, Kakinada: I bowed my head in remembrance of Nelson Mandela, who waged a relentless struggle against discrimination throughout his eventful life, on his birth anniversary today.  The word discrimination, brings me to the current TDP regime, which denies pensions to septuagenarians, widows, the physically challenged with 100% disability, all of whom are waging day-to-day battle for survival. On what basis does this government indulge in discrimination? It is purely predicated on party affiliations and loyalties, ignoring the fact that these people constitute the weakest sections of society.

Today, Praja Sankalpa Yatra was bustling with people as usual. It took more than three hours for my Padayatra move along a kilometre of its route, amidst thousands of enthusiastic supporters and well-wishers.

The very name, Kakinada is associated with many interesting things. Kakinada Kaja, the globally renowned sweet dish, the equally well-known Arya Vaisya Subbiah’s delicious meals, come to mind. Kakinada has always been described as a pensioners’ paradise.

Today, the picture has changed completely. People would be apprehensive of settling down in what has been touted as one of the 20 smart cities in the country. It was declared as one in the very first list of 20 such cities and yet, day-to-day life has only worsened here. This smart city stands at the bottom of the list when it comes to development and this gift was bestowed upon Kakinada by Chandrababu Naidu in his four-year alliance with the BJP.

The government has been conducting the TETs without holding DSE, for four years. Unemployed youth who met me today, were furious about this and wondered what the government’s intention was. They pointed out that they were forced to repeat the exam because of the weightage given to TET marks in DSE. In such circumstances, a half mark can make a world of difference, they pointed out. Lakhs of unemployed youth had to shell out fees adding up to crores of rupees, to the government, they observed. They expressed their anguish saying that the government was conducting TET without holding the DSE exams and in the bargain, it is private coaching centres which benefit the most.

Read: Chandrababu Rule Replete With Self-Created Blunders: YS Jagan

Narrating her problems to me, Satyavathi said that in the name of a bypass road, their houses had been razed to the ground. With great difficulty, saving every rupee she earned as a daily wage labourer, she managed to buy a small piece of land of about 85 sq yards. This was the only asset she had which she thought would come in handy at the time of her daughter’s marriage. She spent Rs.3500 per square yard at the time of buying the land, whereas the government now offered Rs.980 per square yard as per its estimate! She said that the current market rate was well over Rs.15,000 per square yard. Satyavathi sobbed complaining that with the compensation amount given by the government, she would not even be able to repay the loans she took for buying this plot which meant everything to her. “With everything gone, including my life-savings and the plot we owned, we have no other alternative but to commit suicide,” she wailed.

A bangle-seller who sold his wares on a pushcart had a similar tale to tell. He accumulated every rupee he could save and even sold his wife’s mangalasutra to acquire a plot of 90 sq yds. “Sir, this government refuses to pay the registration amount as compensation.” The tragedy which unfolded in the lives of these poor citizens was beyond description. There were several other such impoverished villagers in Nadukuduru, Torangi and neighbouring hamlets, they said.

Development is always welcome, but it cannot be at the cost of the lives of poor villagers. Justice should be the first priority. Progress which plays havoc with the lives of the deprived segments of society has no meaning.

I have a question for the chief minister — instead of focusing only on corruption, have you ever concentrated on development? You had made several commitments to Kakinada including a petroleum university, petro corridor, LNG terminal, VCIC corridor and a logistics university. Do you remember any of these promises?  Can you truthfully proclaim that at least one of these commitments has been fulfilled?

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