TRS kept out the national leaders especially those from the NDA coalition and chief minister-designate of the residuary Andhra Pradesh Chandrababu Naidu
GN Bureau | June 2, 2014
Telangana Rashtra Samithi president K Chandrasekhara Rao today took charge as the first chief minister of the newest and 29th state of the country. He was formally sworn in as the chief minister at 8:15 am at a glittering ceremony held in the precincts of Raj Bhavan in Hyderabad. E S L Narasimhan, who took charge earlier at 6:30 am as the first governor of Telangana, administered the oath of office and secrecy to KCR and his 10 other cabinet colleagues on this occasion.
Telangana, which weathered a 60-year-long tumultuous and emotion-filled struggle for statehood, formally came into being as the new state at the stroke of 12 midnight last night. The fulfilment of the June 2nd Appointed Day was marked with widespread revelry across the 10 districts of the new state including its bejewelled capital Hyderabad. Hyderabad will incidentally serve as the joint capital for both Telangana and the residuary Andhra Pradesh for a period of 10 years.
Thousands streaming into the streets welcomed the arrival of the moment of truth last midnight. Overflowing emotions of joy and accomplishment found their manifestation in the celebrations that lasted long till early morning. As sunshine became brighter, the frenzied euphoria of the historic moment was quickly replaced by a flurry of ceremonies and festivities beginning with the coronation of KCR. Basking in the separate Telangana success, the diminutive TRS chief began his most memorable day by paying respects to the Telangana martyrs at a memorial in Hyderabad.
The first ever popular government headed by KCR comprised a good sprinkling of experience and youthful exuberance. Keeping one of his promises, the TRS chief gave the deputy chief minister status to two of his trusted ministerial colleagues, Mahmood Ali and Rajaiah. In the subsequent allocation of portfolios, Ali was entrusted with the revenue ministry while Rajaiah was given the responsibility of health and medical education. Other key members of his small cabinet are Eetela Rajender who bagged the key finance portfolio; KCR’s nephew Harish Rao who will look after major irrigation; KCR’s son K Taraka Rama Rao entrusted with IT and heavy industries; Padma Rao who was given excise ministry; Nayini Narsimha Reddy receiving the crucial home ministry; Pocharam Srinivasa Reddy who was given housing and Jagadiswar Reddy armed with the panchayat raj department.
The first ever Telangana cabinet however failed to have a woman in its midst. The TRS sources are confident that their leader would be giving due representation to the fairer sex in the subsequent expansions of the council of ministers.
The KCR swearing-in was an event worth remembering for long, but there was no sight of any central leaders at the ceremony. The TRS appeared to have consciously kept out the national leaders especially those from the NDA coalition. The TRS government also failing to extend a formal invite to TDP chief and chief minister-designate of the residuary Andhra Pradesh Chandrababu Naidu kicked up a mini-controversy.
While the TRS sources claimed that an invite has been forwarded through the general administration department, the TDP leaders fumed at the TRS government glossing over basic courtesies.
Soon after assuming his coveted position in the newly formed state, Governor E S L Narasimhan hosted a ‘High Tea’ for the new team that has a mountainous task ahead in building Telangana as an independent state. KCR and his team later headed straight to the parade grounds where they presided over a guard of honour and a slew of festivities organised to commemorate the Telangana formation day.
Speaking on the occasion, the new chief minister of the newest state kept his focus firmly on development and welfare. He showered a slew of sops for the general public and the state government employees. Pay scales on par with the central government employees, a Telangana formation day increment and health cards were some of those he promised to implement at the earliest for the employees.
KCR vowed to develop his dream project of housing for the weaker sections as a model scheme for the entire country. He also outlined his commitment to transform the region as the Green Bowl of India, making it the most sought after for all types of seeds. He reiterated his promises to waive off farm loans of up to Rs one lakh and mitigate the power crisis at the earliest and ensure sufficient irrigation water from Godavari and Krishna rivers.
The Telangana chief minister was later accorded a rousing red-carpet welcome by the government employees at the secretariat. Speaking on his first visit after assuming office, he promised to come up with an employee-friendly regime during the next five years.
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