Abandoning its position of confrontation against the Center, the Telangana Rashtra Samithi government, led by Prime Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao, decided to implement the central scheme of Ayushman Bharat, against whom it had opposed for the past two years.
The decision to implement the scheme was conveyed to the Center by Telangana Chief Secretary Somesh Kumar during a video conference with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday.
“The chief secretary informed the prime minister that the chief minister has made a decision to associate the Telangana government’s Arogyasri health scheme with the Ayushman Bharat scheme of the Indian government,” a brief official note from the state government said.
Health Minister Eatala Rajender said on Thursday that the state government had in principle decided to implement the Ayushman Bharat scheme of the Center in the state starting this year. “Whether it is a central system or a state system, it will only be implemented with public money,” he said.
Since Ayushman Bharat was introduced in September 2018, KCR, as Telangana chief minister is known, has strongly resisted and refused to implement it in Telangana, claiming that his government’s Arogyasri scheme was much better than Ayushman’s. Bharat, which would hardly benefit a few lakh people.
He even said that Ayushman Bharat was a weak imitation of Telangana’s Arogyasri scheme. In the 2019 general elections, BJP leaders, including Union Home Secretary Amit Shah, made it a major issue during their campaign, accusing KCR of denying Ayushman Bharat benefits to the poor.
“It is good that KCR has changed its mind about Ayushman Bharat. But he should apologize to the people of Telangana for refusing to implement the scheme in the last two years, “BJP President Bandi Sanjay said.
The change in KCR’s position on Ayushman Bharat comes within three days of its transformation towards the implementation of the contentious central laws on agriculture. It was not until Sunday that the prime minister said the state government would no longer be involved in the sale and purchase of agricultural products as new agricultural laws were implemented across the country.
Claiming that the government suffered a loss of US $ 7.5 billion in the purchase of agricultural products last season to ensure the minimum price of support (MSP) for farmers affected by the pandemic, he said the state is not a business organization or a trader who buys the products every year.
Just a few months ago, TRS had voted against agricultural bills in Parliament. Party leaders made strong statements against the agriculture bills and also took part in the Bharat Bandh program in the first week of December.
KCR has even announced that it will hold a national conclave in Hyderabad in the third week of December by strengthening all anti-BJP forces to fight the Center’s agricultural laws.
Lead journalist and political analyst Suresh Dharur said the change in KCR’s stance on the Modi government was quite obvious after Telangana Rashtra Samithi faced shocking disagreements in the November Dubbak rally polls and the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) elections in early Monday. December.
“Apparently, the KCR felt that the Bharatiya Janata Party was emerging as a strong force. If he continues to adopt a confrontational attitude towards the center, he will lose ground to the state BJP. That is why he decided to give up his anti-Modi stand “, said Dharur.
According to him, KCR seems to be following the path of Naveen Patnaik and YS Jagan Mohan Reddy, his counterparts in Odisha and Andhra Pradesh, respectively, to move closer to the central leadership of the BJP, thus obtaining maximum benefits to the state in the form of approvals for us. additional projects and funds.
“If KCR remains friendly with the Center, BJP leaders at the state level will not have the chance to go aggressively against TRS. This will also create some confusion among BJP cadres, ”Dharur noted.