Implement ‘Unemployment Allowance Scheme’ in TS: TPCC Chief

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TPCC President Capt N Uttam Kumar Reddy is seen addressing media conference in Gandhi Bhavan - File Photo by P Anil Kumar

Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC) President & Nalgonda MP Capt N Uttam Kumar Reddy said that the nationwide ‘Speak Up India’ online campaign undertaken by the Congress party on Thursday received tremendous response in Telangana.

Speaking to media persons, Uttam Kumar Reddy informed that over 1.5 lakh Congress leaders and workers from across Telangana State went live on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, etc., to convey a common message that Central Government led by Prime Minister Narender Modi should help the poor people who were affected due to unplanned lockdown.

“As per the directions of Congress president Sonia Gandhi, we all demanded that the Central Government provide immediate cash assistance of Rs.10,000 to all poor families and also provide Rs.7,500 per month for the next six months. We urged the government to ensure safe and free travel of migrant workers to their native places without further delay. We also demanded that the workdays under MNREGA be extended to 200 days to facilitate jobs in rural areas,” he said.

Further, Uttam Kumar Reddy said that the Central Government should announce a special package for Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) to protect crores of jobs. He said the small and medium industry should be provided financial relief and not just loans.

Stating that lakhs of jobs were lost in Telangana due to unplanned lockdown, the TPCC Chief demanded that Chief Minister Chandrashekhar Rao immediately implement the ‘Unemployment Allowance scheme’ to provide Rs. 3,016 per month to all jobless youth in the State. He said the promise, made in 2018 Assembly elections, remained unfulfilled for the last one-and-a-half year and this was the most appropriate time for its launch. He also urged the State Government to waive off power and water bills for the lockdown period for all categories of consumers.

Uttam Kumar Reddy strongly condemned the Chief Minister for announcing a cut in the salaries of government employees by 50%, pensioners pay by 25% and salaries of Class IV and outsourcing employees by 10% for the third consecutive month in May. “KCR himself admitted that the State Government has a huge debt burden and it needs to pay about Rs. 37,000 Crore annually, which is almost one-third of total revenues, towards repayment of loans and interest. The present economic crisis was not solely because of lockdown, but due to poor fiscal management of KCR Govt,” he said.

The TPCC Chief also asked KCR not to confuse people on Coronavirus situation in Telangana State. “Initially, KCR took the light of Covid-19 and described as a disease that could be cured through a Paracetamol tablet. After imposing lockdown, he presented it as the biggest threat to human existence. After 60 days of lockdown, which completely ruined the economy, when cases and deaths were at their peak, he is now declaring the situation as ‘not alarming’. He is yet to come out clear on why the testing percentage in Telangana was lowest in the country. He must apologise to the people for giving misleading statements while promising ‘Corona free Telangana’ by April 7,” he said.

Uttam Kumar Reddy thanked the Congress cadre for the tremendous response they have displayed in participating in ‘Speak Up India’ campaign. It may be mentioned that the TPCC President held multiple video-conferences with the top leadership in Telangana, besides having a teleconference with nearly 27,000 Congress activists across the State for the last three days in connection with the online campaign. He also held several interactive sessions with the party cadre through various social media platforms to motivate them the success of ‘Speak Up India’ campaign.

He later interacted with migrant workers from Orissa before flagging off their bus in Gandhi Bhavan today. These workers said that they have not received any Financial help either from Central or State.