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Andhra Pradesh: Minister faces heat as govt foots Rs 2.88 lakh dental treatment bill

Andhra Pradesh Finance Minister Yanamala Ramakrishnudu had undergone a root canal treatment at Azure Dental in Singapore on April 12 and submitted the Rs 2,88,823 bill for the procedure.

By: Express News Service | Hyderabad | August 25, 2018 3:56:14 am

Andhra Pradesh Finance Minister Yanamala Ramakrishnudu is facing criticism after the state government reimbursed his Rs 2.88 lakh dental treatment bill.

Ramakrishnudu had undergone a root canal treatment at Azure Dental in Singapore on April 12 and submitted the Rs 2,88,823 bill for the procedure to Dr NTR Vaidya Seva Trust — the Trust implements the health scheme of AP government to provide financial assistance to BPL families. All ministers and government employees, including All India Service officers, are covered under the scheme and can claim reimbursement.

On August 23, the AP government passed a government order sanctioning the amount as medical reimbursement.

Even as the Opposition YSR Congress Party mounted an attack on the TDP minister and accused him of “misusing” public money, Ramakrishnudu claimed that he did not go to Singapore particularly for the treatment.

“I had accompanied the Chief Minister and Urban Development Minister Dr P Narayana on an official visit to Singapore in April. There I developed a severe problem and I had to undergo the root canal procedure urgently. I could not cut short the visit and come to Andhra and get it done. The problem was very acute and I had to get it done there itself although it was very expensive…I paid about $5,000 Singapore. Since ministers can claim reimbursement, I applied and the government sanctioned it,” he said.

The Opposition, however, has rubbished his claim. “In reality, TDP ministers and leaders are misusing public money for personal needs. He could have got the treatment done here in the state for Rs 10,000. What was the need to spend Rs 2.88 lakh on such a simple treatment?” YSR Congress Party leader K Parthasarathy said.

In February, Kerala Assembly Speaker P Sreeramakrishnan had faced criticism after the government reimbursed him Rs 49,900 for a pair of spectacles. The Speaker had claimed an ophthalmologist advised him to purchase the glasses priced Rs 45,000.

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