KCR Hits Out Centre as TRS Intensifies Stir Over Paddy Row

Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao (KCR) on Monday hit out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi and said that the PM cannot play with the farmers in the country. KCR attacked the centre during a protest by the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) leaders on Monday in New Delhi.

BKU leader Rakesh Tikait, KT Rama Rao, state ministers, MPs, MLAs and other public representatives joined the protest to scale up their fight demanding that the centre purchase paddy produced in the rabi season.

The Telangana CM also said that the way the prime minister is behaving is not acceptable and added that PM Modi is not permanent in power.

“I welcome all the farmers and our leaders who have come all the way from the state 2,000 kms away from Delhi. I want to warn PM Modi that you cannot play with Farmers in the country,” KCR said.

“You are not permanent in the power. The way you are behaving is not acceptable to us,” the Telangana CM said while attacking the prime minister.

The TRS has put up hoardings in the national capital demanding that there should be one paddy procurement policy in the country, party sources said. Alleging that the BJP-led NDA government discriminated against Telangana, TRS has taken up a series of protests, including road blockades, for nearly a week.

The protests by TRS came amid a row and a war of words between the TRS and BJP over paddy procurement in the state. While the TRS government has been demanding that the Centre procure paddy, the Centre has said it would buy raw rice.

The Telangana government had given in writing that it will not supply parboiled rice but raw rice to the Food Corporation of India (FCI), Union Food Minister Piyush Goyal had said recently. Alleging that TRS is enacting a drama by holding protests in the name of paddy procurement to divert public attention from its recent hike in electricity charges, BJP MLA Raja Singh has recently said the state government should take steps to procure paddy from farmers to supply raw rice to the Centre as per the agreement.

Meanwhile, BJP in Telangana organized a protest here demanding that Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao either purchase paddy produced by state’s farmers or step down from his post. Union Minister V Muraleedharan, state BJP president and MP Bandi Sanjay Kumar and other leaders attended the agitation.

Alleging that the BJP-led NDA government discriminated against Telangana, TRS has taken up a series of protests, including road blockades, for nearly 10 days. While the TRS government has been demanding that the Centre procure paddy from the state, the union government has maintained that it would buy raw rice.

Telangana BJP president and MP Bandi Sanjay Kumar recently alleged that the TRS government’s “politicking on paddy procurement” smacks of a large-scale conspiracy to help middlemen make hundreds of crores and diverting the anger of farmers towards the Centre.

(With inputs from PTI)

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