Telangana Chief Minister A. Revanth Reddy on Wednesday claimed that the Congress government inherited an empty treasury as the previous Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) government indulged in misuse of public money and corruption.
He alleged that the previous government left the coffers completely dry with its acts of omissions and commissions and massive debts during the last 10 years.
At his maiden press conference after assuming office, the Chief Minister slammed the BRS leaders for “looting public money”.
Revanth Reddy said the new government has already ordered judicial inquiry into corruption allegations in a few projects and hinted at more such inquiries and steps to recover the looted public money.
On BRS Working President K.T. Rama Rao giving Rs 1 lakh to a woman, who had submitted her application during Praja Vani programme of the Congress government, Revanth Reddy said that he is happy that he forced KTR to give Rs. 1 lakh.
“They amassed Rs 1 lakh crore of ill-gotten wealth during their rule. Out of that, he has spent Rs 1 lakh. We will take steps to recover the entire amount in the due course,” he said.
The Chief Minister reiterated that KTR’s entry into politics was through the “management quota” and he has no subject knowledge.
He said when the government presented white paper on state finances in the Assembly, KTR and former Finance Minister T. Harish Rao could not substantiate their claims despite being given ample time to speak.
On the criticism of Congress government by KTR and other BRS leaders, the Chief Minister termed it “withdrawal symptoms” after losing power.
Revanth Reddy alleged that the previous BRS government indulged in wasteful expenditure, citing the demolition of Secretariat buildings to construct the new ones.
He also alleged that former Chief Minister KCR and his aides had procured 22 land cruisers and hid it, hoping to use them after returning to power for a third term. He pointed out that each vehicle costs Rs 3 crore and its cost will further go up after bulletproofing.
The Chief Minister said the Congress government has ordered inquiries to ascertain where the huge amounts raised by the previous regime were spent. He mentioned that the government already ordered a judicial probe into construction of Medigadda and Annaram barrages, power purchase agreement with Chhattisgarh and the Yadadri and Bhadradri power plants.
Stating that there will be inquiry in all such projects, Revanth Reddy said this will reveal the role of KCR, KTR, Harish Rao, contracting companies and officials.
“There will be action once we complete the inquiry,” he said, hinting that the government may invoke the Revenue Recovery Act.
Asked how the Congress government will deal with the current financial situation and make the state revenue surplus, he said the government will achieve this by putting an end to misuse of public money and corruption.
Referring to his meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday, he said the state would try to get pending funds and grants from the Centre. He also made it clear that the Congress government remains committed to implement six guarantees and welfare schemes.
Revanth Reddy said the government would fill two lakh vacancies in the government departments by December 9, 2024 as he allayed the apprehensions of unemployed and students over the filling of vacancies.
The Chief Minister said the process for conducting recruitment exams will begin once the Telangana State Public Service Commission (TSPSC) is reconstituted. Though TSPSC Chairman and members have submitted their resignation, the Governor was yet to accept the same.
Once the resignations are accepted, a new board will be constituted which will then initiate the process to conduct recruitment exams.
Asked about the row in neighbouring Karnataka over sign boards in Kannada, he said there was no such issue in Telangana. “Ninety per cent boards are in Telugu. If there is any problem we will rectify. There is no need to worry if the boards are in Telugu, Urdu or English. It’s not a debatable issue,” he said.