Hyderabad: Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao on Saturday recalled that many had mocked Rythu Bandhu when it was launched and similar sentiments were being expressed about the ambitious Telangana Dalit Bandhu programme now.
“We will dispel all their apprehensions and implement the scheme with the same spirit and emerge victorious,” the Chief Minister said at a meeting with Dalit leaders and organisations at Pragathi Bhavan here. He asked the gathering to take a pledge that Dalits from Huzurabad would pave the way for successful implementation of the scheme in Telangana.
The Chief Minister said the world believed that the people of Telangana were like tiger cubs that got tangled with a herd of sheep in undivided Andhra Pradesh. “And now, the country is astonished at the development of Telangana after State formation and self-governance,” he pointed out.
Stating that good days are here again for the farming community in the State since they are in a position to take up cultivation even in Rohini Karthi, he said while there was overall development happening, there were still some social ills like dowry and untouchability being practised. These can be overcome with access to education and development on the economic front, he said.
The State government will always stand by the elderly, single women and differently-abled. In the same way, the State was now determined to bring smiles on the faces of the Dalit community members, he reiterated.
On Banda Srinivas’ appointment, he said he had been a disciplined party worker. The new appointment was not merely a post but a responsibility to put the Telangana Dalit community on development path, he said.
“So far, the government has launched some schemes that asked for bank guarantees. How will the poor members of the Dalit community who have nothing but empty stomachs bring the required bank guarantees? Therefore, financial support that will be provided by the Dalit Bandhu will be totally free. This won’t be a loan. There is no need to repay it to anyone. There will be no brokers or middlemen. The financial support will straight away be deposited into the beneficiaries’ bank accounts,” the Chief Minister clarified.
“Dalit Bandhu is an effort to infuse self-confidence among the Dalit community, make them able to take care of their own development. The support that will be given should not be used for day to day purposes or buying groceries. That should be used to invest in businesses and aid in employment generation. There should be economic development and everybody should work towards that,” the Chief Minister said.
He recollected Dr BR Ambedkar’s efforts for the development of the Dalit Bahujan community. “However, successive governments neglected the development of the downtrodden. Telangana has chosen to walk in the path laid by Mahatma Gandhi and Ambedkar, and will take up development of the Dalits.”
Various schemes implemented by Telangana were already being replicated by other States. In the same way, the Dalit Bandhu too would be a model for other States, he said, adding that there was need for motivation and that was happening in Huzurabad. “It is a matter of pride for people from Huzurabad,” he said.
“If the implementation is successful, it will do good for the Dalit community. A new path will be laid. That will depend on the discipline and integrity of Huzurabad Dalit leaders. The implementation should be irrespective of political affiliations with mutual respect and a feeling of brotherhood.”
“Dalit habitats should be developed and should be devoid of fights, ill-feelings and hatred,” he said. He suggested lifting of cases that had been foisted against each other in the community. Efforts should be taken to support those who are falling. There should be no Dalit in poverty and that is the aim of the Dalit Bandhu, he said.
He said it was not just a scheme but a movement like the one fought for statehood.
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