June 12, 2009 10:35:06 am
It is not often that a ruling party fulfils poll promises made by the Opposition. Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy,however,may do just that. He has agreed to consider the Cash Transfer Scheme (CTS) for the poor,an ambitious Telugu Desham Party election promise.
After the TDP lost the election,party president N Chandrababu Naidu urged the Congress Government to implement CTS in the state. We devised the CTS after painstakingly studying similar schemes in other countries especially in South America. We may come back to power only after five years but why should a scheme as good as the CTS lie in cold-storage till then? If this government really wants the welfare of the poor,it should implement this scheme as soon as possible, Naidu told the first session of the new Assembly.
After initial reluctance,the Chief Minister on Thursday agreed to go through the TDPs CTS plan. The CM gave it a thought after Naidus hardsell in the Assembly. He has sought a report on CTS. Though the CM feels that such a scheme cannot be implemented as it would drain the state of all financial resources,he is willing to go through it, a source in the Chief Ministers Office said.
State Finance Minister K Rosaiah,however,had doubts about its implementation. The Government is already implementing several pro-poor schemes worth crores of rupees. The CTS does not appear feasible, Rosaiah said.
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The CTS proposes to provide minimum Rs 1,000 every month to poor or unemployed families by transferring money directly to their bank accounts in nationalised banks to eliminate middlemen. The money can be withdrawn from ATMs.
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