Injustice done with Telangana in ‘Smart Cities’ selection: Shabbir Ali

Leader of Opposition in Telangana Legislative Council Mohammed Ali Shabbir has accused Union Minister for Urban Development M. Venkaiah Naidu of showing his bias towards Telangana by selecting just two cities of the State for the ‘Smart Cities’ initiative of the Union Government.

In a media statement here on Thursday, Shabbir Ali said Venkaiah Naidu gave prominence to other States including Andhra Pradesh while neglecting Telangana. His native State, Andhra Pradesh got ‘Smart Cities’ tag for three cities and Karnataka, from where Naidu got elected to Rajya Sabha, got six cities in the list. The Centre has picked more number of cities from the BJP-ruled States like Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra. “Venkaiah Naidu has conveniently ignored the fact that cities and towns of Telangana need focussed attention and funds for development as they remained ignored during the united Andhra Pradesh. The previous Congress Government at the Centre granted statehood for Telangana to undo the injustices done to Telangana in the past. However, the BJP-led NDA Government has continued those injustices and neglect,” he said.

Shabbir Ali also blamed Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao for his failure to get more cities of Telangana included in the list of Smart Cities. He said that the TRS MPs should have made effective representation with the Centre. KCR himself should have visited New Delhi along with the list of cities which should be developed as Smart Cities. Addressing separate press conferences, KCR had promised to get Smart Cities status for Karimnagar and Nizamabad. However, he did not follow on his own promises. He remained confined in the castles which he built in the air and did not bother to stake claim on Telangana’s due share from the Centre.

The Congress leader pointed out that previous Congress Government has developed Hyderabad by spending over Rs. One lakh crore during its regime from 2004-2014. On an average, a new project was launched every six months and it was completed with proper funding. The new international airport, 160-KM long Nehru Outer Ring Road, 11-KM PVNR Expressway, arterial roads, development of parks, drinking water projects and several other initiatives were successfully initiated. Similar initiatives were also taken in other districts including Karimnagar, Nizamabad, Warangal, Nalgonda, Mahabubnagar and Ranga Reddy.

“The biggest achievement of Congress party was granting statehood to Telangana. We wanted the entire Telangana to grow on par with other parts of the country and for the same reason, despite suffering political setbacks, Congress party created Telangana State. But TRS Government in the State and BJP Government at the Centre have jointly sabotaged the interest of Telangana,” he alleged.

Shabbir Ali said that the people of Telangana would not tolerate the injustice and bias. He said Venkaiah Naidu should be boycotted for the bias that he has shown towards Telangana in giving Smart Cities tag. Further, KCR will be questioned for his failure to make effective representation, he said. (NSS)