The Rosaiah government on Friday demonstrated its commitment on implementing the Indira Gandhi 20-point programme in the State by appointing N Tulasi Reddy from Pulivendula, Kadapa district, as chairman of the programme with Cabinet rank.
It is also clear from development that the Congress government has tightened its belt to spread the scheme message and its bid to rope in all poor families.
The government also hopes that the programme’s implementation would go a long way in enhancing its image and increasing its base.
Based on the performance and implementation of the 20-point programme, states have been graded. Andhra Pradesh had stood first in 92-93 and thereafter it had slumped and was relegated to 23rd rank.
‘Garibi hatao’ tops the list and the state government will give due importance to this as part of its renewed efforts to implement the programme.
As part of these efforts, emphasis was given to SC family coverage. Out of 40 lakh SC families targeted, only half were covered, said AP Planning Commission Special Chief Secretary Tishya Chatterjee.
Taking charge as the chairman on Friday, Mr Tulasi Reddy expressed confidence that Andhra Pradesh would once again attain the first rank at the National level in the implementation of the scheme with certain changes as may be necessary to suit better spread and better response from the public.
Mr Tulasi Reddy said that the concept of scheme was to erase poverty and alleviate the suffering of the poor.
He added that former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, who held the programme dear to her, started it in 1975 and was very keen on its implementation and extending a helping hand to the poor.
Now the state government has taken it as a challenge to identify the aims and targets of the UPA government, keeping in view the SAARC nations' ideology, he said. Mr Tulasi Reddy added that since the gradation/rank acts as a kind of scale to measure the performance of the scheme, he would strive to take AP to first rank in India again.
The state Planning Commission will send details of the working and implementation of the scheme to the Centre to gauge the state's efforts.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh would also be informed about the efforts of the various states in implementation of the scheme.
The data would be precise and to the point that even mandal-wise statistics would be taken into account. This essentially means that the new Chairman has a huge task before him.