Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy said that untouchability still prevails in a different form by sneaking into the field of education and has expressed his resolve that the wounds of bifurcation of the state have prompted decentralisation of development with the three capital concept and asserted that the demand for Special Category Status (SCS) will be continue.
Addressing the people of the state after taking the salute of the colourful parade at the Indira Gandhi Municipal Grounds on the occasion of the 74th Independence Day and hoisting the tricolour, he said that untouchability has come in a different form with vested interests opposing children of the weaker sections to study in English medium fearing that they will have a level playfield with their kin who are sent to corporate schools. While the average illiteracy rate is 33 percent, in SCs it is 36 per cent and in STs it is 51.2 per cent which is a matter of concern.
The fruits of the reforms in the education sector we are now implementing will be clearly visible in ten to twenty years from now as the curriculum includes skill development, English medium apart, and will bring out the youngsters ready to face the competitive world.
The three capital concept has come out from the core reasons behind the State bifurcation. The wounds are still fresh and in a bid to prevent any such further wounds our Government has taken up the decentralisation of development with Visakhapatnam as Executive capital and Kurnool as Judicial Capital so that the fruits of development are evenly spread to all regions.
Special Category Status (SCS) is still on our agenda and we will continue to pester the Centre on the issue till we achieve it, he said, In the true spirit of the Constitution we are providing opportunities to all and are ensuring social justice and our Nava Ratnalu are being implemented to uplift the weaker sections in an unprecedented manner, despite financial constraints.
Listing out the welfare schemes, he said, the government has brought in Amma Vodi, YSR Cheyutha, YSR Asara and 50 percent reservation in nominated posts besides Disha Act for the economic, social and political empowerment of women. Rythu Bharosa, house sites to 30 lakh families, Vahana Mitra, Pension Kanuka, Zero interest, Law Nestham, Nethanna Nestham, Matsyakara Bharosa, Aarogyasri, Arogya Asara, Vasathi Devena, Vidya Devena, Chethodu, Kapu Nestham, Goru Mudha, Kanti Velugu, Nadu Nedu in schools and hospitals and others have been drafted to erase the inequalities in the society.
We have provided opportunities to weaker sections and women in Temple committees, nominated posts, nominated contract works and have shaken up the outsourcing system by doing away with middlemen and commissions. The cabinet composition also stands as a shining example of social justice.
We have brought in transparent and corruption free governance and introduced Reverse Tendering, Judicial Preview and Direct Benefit Transfer system during the 14 months in our office and have spent Rs 46,000 crores towards welfare schemes. As corruption decays the system the reforms in the form of Reverse Tendering and Judicial Preview have benefited the State Rs 4,000 crores.
In the times of Covid, we salute the frontline warriors from Doctors to nurses, technicians, sanitary workers, Asha workers and others for their service. Medicare has taken a big leap now after it was neglected. We have made Aarogyasri vibrant by developing infrastructure like more number of ambulance vehicles and improving facilities and extending its scope, covering more number of ailments. From Primary Health Centres to Teaching Hospitals the quality of medicare has been improving and 16 more teaching hospitals would be added to the existing 11 in the coming days.
We have developed a delivery mechanism system for the welfare schemes in the form of village and ward secretariats and have appointed 1.4 lakh people in government service besides 2.7 lakh volunteers and 82.5 percent of them belong to weaker sections.
We have been taking firm steps towards prohibition, and on the irrigation front, we will be completing the six core projects o time. Efforts are on to complete Polavaram by 2022 khariff. Free power to farmers, incentives to MSMEs, providing 75 per cent reservation to locals in industries and setting up of Skill Development Centres are the other initiatives of the Government. Of the 129 promises made in the manifesto, we have fulfilled 83 and more 30 are in the pipeline while 16 will be implemented soon. There are 39 welfare schemes which were being implemented though not mentioned in the manifesto.
We must be grateful to the freedom fighters and their sacrifices which led the country from darkness to light and in continuation taking the country from backwardness to development, he said.