AP Govt strengthening Local Bodies: CM

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Hyderabad, Sep 2 (UNI) Denying the opposition charge that the Congress Government was weakening panchayatraj institutions, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy today said ''every paise'' meant for rural development was spent as decided by the District Planning Committee concerned.

The State Government was transferring funds due to local bodies as per the recommendations of the State Finance Commission and there was no question of denial or diversion of funds due to them, he said while intervening during question hour.

Dr Reddy said to strengthen the local bodies, the Government had set apart Rs 33 crore for providing incentives to those panchayats, which elected their representatives unanimously.

It was his Government, which was providing houses and pensions to the weaker section of people, based on ''saturation concept'' irrespective of their party affiliations, as was done in the past, he added.

The TDP, which had introduced the nodal officer system, overlooking the elected representatives of local bodies, was indulging in double talk for ''political expediency'', Finance Minister K Rosaiah contended earlier while replying to questions from CPI(M) and TDP members.

Irked by the opposition criticism that the Congress had put paid to the dreams of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and Mahatma Gandhi, Mr Rosaiah retorted it was the TDP which had ''ousted'' N T Rama Rao and now paying tributes to him.

Protesting against Mr Rosaiah's remark, the TDP members rushed to the well of the House and disrupted the proceedings for some time before Speaker K R Suresh Reddy pacified the members and restored order in the house.

UNI SM VA RR AS1913

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