Parupaka Cross, East Godavari District: Rain played spoilsport during today’s padayatra and I had to call off padayatra from afternoon since people were braving the rains to meet me. Today, I walked across Gidijam and S Agraharam villages which are primarily dominated by the Kapu and backward communities. Despite their problems, they welcomed me with a smile on their faces. They carpeted the roads with sarees across the village for me to walk on. I was told this is a tradition they follow when their favorite leader visits their villages.
Today, I heard a lot about non-disbursement of pension, removal of pension, no homes for poor, no loan waivers and not even minimum support price for the agricultural produce. Pilla Sita and Ammaji, both widows, from the Kapu community met me and informed that they have not been given widow pension. It was hard to make ends meet, they said.
Similar stories of non-disbursement of pension were heard across sections. Lakshmi from Gidijam told me that her handicapped husband never got pension, while 75-year-old Surya Rao also informed that he was not getting old age pension. Veeralakshmi and Nooka Ratnam of Gidijam said that despite having all the eligibility criteria, they were not allotted houses. Like this several people told me about the government schemes which were restricted only to paper and never reached the needy.
Ramisetty Satyanarayana of Pithapuram lost his leg in an accident. He met me to pour out his woes. After running from pillar to post in all the government offices seeking help for employment, no official reacted. He is still trying his luck. Are there more deserving than such people? Are there any welfare schemes functional? What kind of governance is this?
The government is misleading the people saying that deserved people have been given houses and mass housewarming ceremonies were being held, while people who are in need are not even considered. Similarly, Chandrababu government cheated the Kapu community by promising Rs 1000 crore per year, but never did that happen. If the funds are not spent on the needy, then what is the use of welfare schemes? What is the use of corporations? It is not important how long you have ruled the state, but how well you have governed it.
Golla Subramaniam, a 75-year-old man from Gidijam, who has a problem with his eyesight, narrated at length instances of Chandrababu’s betrayal. He is a hardcore fan of my father, late Dr YS Rajasekhara Reddy. He sang a song, “Rajasekhara… Ravayya malli…”, which was written and composed by him. It was heartening to listen to the grand old man sing.
I have a question for the chief minister – You had promised to include Kapu community into BCs within six months of coming to power. Now, just six months are left for your term to end. Have you included Kapu into BCs? You had promised Rs 1000 crore per year for the Kapu community, so by this year you should have released Rs 5000 crores, the fact is that till date he has released just Rs 1340 crores. Will you clear Rs 3,660 crores in next six months? Similarly, you have betrayed other communities including Boya, Kuruba, Madiga, Matyakara and Rajaka. Is this not treachery and betrayal of people?