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Another Rs 500 cr released for 'Dalit Bandhu' scheme in Huzurabad

The Telangana government on Thursday released another Rs 500 crore for implementation of Dalit Bandhu scheme, on a pilot basis, in Huzurabad Assembly constituency.

On the orders of Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao, the State SC Corporation released the money to the account of Karimnagar District Collector.

With this, Rs 2,000 crore target for implementation of the Dalit Bandhu scheme, as a pilot project, in Huzurabad has been achieved.

The Corporation released Rs 1,500 crore since August 23 while Rs 500 crore was made available on August 6.

The target of Rs 2,000 crore was announced by the chief minister while addressing a public meeting in the constituency.

Officials said that the government machinery has made all arrangements at the field level to take up the project. With the Rs 2,000 crore released as per orders of the CM, implementation of the Dalit Bandhu scheme will now begin on a war footing in accordance with the guidelines.

Under 'Dalit Bandhu', a brainchild of the Chief Minister, every beneficiary Dalit family will get Rs 10 lakh as grant and they will be free to chose their profession, self-employment or businesses for utilising the funds.

Addressing a public meeting on August 16 at Shalapaly in Huzurabad constituency to launch the scheme, the Chief Minister had announced that the government will disburse over Rs 2,000 crore to 21,000 Dalit families in Huzurabad in next two months.

He said there will be no selection of beneficiaries in Huzurabad Assembly segment, as the scheme will be implemented for all the Scheduled Caste (SC) families in a saturation mode.

Earlier, on August 5 the the government had released Rs 7.60 crore to extend the financial assistance to 76 Dalit families in Vasalamarri, a village adopted by the Chief Minister in Yadadri Bhuvanagiri district.

While addressing the public meeting in Huzurabad, he declared that the all the 17 lakh Dalit families will be benefited from the scheme.

The population of Dalits in the state is 75 lakh population.

KCR, as Rao is popularly known, said that if Dalit Bandhu is implemented for all 17 lakh SC families in the state, it will cost Rs 1.7 lakh crore. He said the government will allocate Rs 30,000 crore to Rs 40,000 crore in the budget every year for 3 to 4 years.

He said to start with poorest of the poor among the SC families will receive the financial assistance.

However, the launch of the pilot from Huzurabad constituency has come under criticism from the opposition parties and some NGOs, who alleged that the ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) is trying to lure Dalit voters.

Huzurabad seat fell vacant following resignation of former minister Eatala Rajender after he was dropped from Cabinet by KCR.

Rajender joined the BJP and is preparing to contest the bypoll as the saffron party candidate.

Both the Congress and the BJP alleged that the launch of Dalit Bandhu from Huzurabad shows the "desperation" of the ruling party.

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