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  • Writer's pictureDahlia Foundation

Decode politics: Why Telangana is seeing a white paper war

Telangana Deputy CM Mallu Bhatti Vikramarka last week tabled a white paper on the state’s finances and said the previous Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) government had left Telangana, which was once revenue surplus, debt-ridden.

Expectedly, the BRS came down heavily on the Congress government and accused it of ruining the image of Telangana.

Why has the white paper turned into a flashpoint between the newly elected Congress government and the previous BRS regime?


According to the white paper tabled in the Assembly, Telangana’s debt rose drastically from Rs 72,658 crore in 2014-15 to Rs 6,71,757 crore in 2023. However, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) pegs the state’s debt at Rs 3.66 lakh crore as of March. “From a revenue surplus state in 2014, Telangana is now riddled with debts due to the previous BRS government’s decisions,’’ the Deputy CM said.


The Congress, citing the white paper, accused the government of overlooking the health and education sectors due to the financial stress on the state. Telangana’s Budget outlay for the two sectors has been the lowest in the country.


The Deputy CM added that 17 Special Purpose Vehicles (SPVs) were created during the BRS regime for corporations and institutions to raise Rs 1.85 lakh crore, but did not have sufficient revenue to service the debt. He pointed out that the Kaleshwaram Lift Irrigation project also has a huge outstanding loan. The white paper states that Rs 97,449 crore was raised for the project, of which Rs 79,287 crore has already been disbursed while the outstanding loan was over Rs 74,500 crore.

Why was the white paper released?

The Congress had focused its campaign on the “huge corruption” of the BRS government and the white paper on the state’s finances is one of the first handful of decisions that the Revanth Reddy government has taken.


In August, at a party meeting, Reddy had said all the decisions taken by the BRS government over the last nine years, especially in the fag end of its tenure, would be reviewed.

As a part of this review, state Irrigation Minister N Uttam Kumar Reddy will make a presentation on the Meddigadda barrage later this week. The minister will also visit the site where one of the pillars had collapsed into the Godavari river following which the then BRS government had been criticised by the National Dam Safety Authority.







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