Last two days

Please make an effort to call everyone in your native place where there is bye poll and ask everyone to cast their vote at any cost. no wedding or birthday party… every vote is crucial for us now. make a difference with your campaign.


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34 responses to “Last two days

  1. Ram
    Save AP from CBN – Compilation for references.

  2. Ram
    Is this an official site? How can we add more value to this?

  3. CVReddy

    కొత్త పలుకు! నేరం.. న్యాయం, జనం.. జగన్! Andhra Jyothy MD RK column.
    – ఆర్కే

    మీడియాతోపాటు ఇన్ని రాజకీయ పార్టీలు ఏకమై జగన్ అవినీతి, అక్రమాల గురించి చెబుతున్నా… ఒక వర్గం ప్రజలకు ఎక్కకపోవడానికి కారణం తెలియక ఆ పార్టీల నాయకులు తలలు పట్టుకుంటున్నారు.

    జగన్ అవినీతికి పాల్పడ్డారని చెబుతూ ఉంటే, ‘ఎవరు తినలేదు కనుక’ అని ప్రజల నుంచి సమాధానం వస్తున్నది. జగన్ ఆర్థిక నేరాలను న్యాయస్థానాలు సీరియస్‌గా తీసుకుంటున్నప్పటికీ ప్రజలు మాత్రం సీరియస్‌గా తీసుకోకపోవడానికి కారణాలను అన్వేషించడంలో ఆయా పార్టీల నాయకులు పడ్డారు. రాజకీయ పార్టీలు, ఆ పార్టీల నాయకుల విశ్వసనీయత దెబ్బతినడం వల్లనే, జగన్‌ను మాత్రమే ఆర్థిక నేరస్థుడిగా చూడటానికి ప్రజలు సిద్ధపడటం లేదు. అందరూ అవినీతిపరులే అన్న భావన ప్రజలలో ఏర్పడినందున జగన్ మాత్రమే నేరస్థుడు అని అంటే అంగీకరించడానికి సిద్ధంగా లేరు. ఈ పరిణామం జగన్‌కు బాగా కలసి వచ్చింది.

    He accepted people are believing Babu as a corrupt man.

    • NLR

      @ CVR garu …

      According to this news Kola joined TDP on 20/05/1999. It also says that babu was present on the occasion.
      So I am sure a photo of them would be in the print media on 20/05/1999(Thursday). We can find it in the State library and it can be scanned.
      I will keep trying online.

  4. Serve Report : No Doubt Ysrcp Win All Segments in By Elections

  5. Ananda Reddy

    tirupati meeting is superhit… i personally attended the meeting… Hope we will get resonable majority….

  6. rohit

    Unsound advice-coomi kapoor
    Senior Congress leaders in Delhi were consulted before the CBI arrested Jaganmohan Reddy in the middle of the by-election campaign in Andhra Pradesh. It was felt that Reddy’s arrest would serve as a warning to other Congress MLAs and ministers who want to quit the party. An input from Raj Bhavan was also sought. But it turns out that the advice given was not very sound. Jagan’s arrest has sparked off a sympathy wave and given the YSR Congress a major boost. It is likely to win all 18 assembly seats in the by-elections. Jagan’s mother Y S Vijayalakshmi is leading the campaign in his absence and is getting a huge response. Unlike her son, Vijayalakshmi is not an orator but she has been able to spread the word that there is a “witch hunt against her family by the very people who had benefited from YSR’s largesse when he was alive”. She even hints at a conspiracy behind YSR’s death. An added bonus in the campaign is Jagan’s sister Sharmila, who has entranced the crowds with her appeal to vote for the YSR Congress.

  7. How about YSRCP chances in yemmiganur…one of our friend is not comfortable to confirm our win..he says, even if we win it vl be around
    500-1000 margin.
    Other friend said,
    as rudra gowda is kotla candidate, kotla has setup a rented house in yemmiganur since 1.5month and campaigning over there. he has good connections when has was representing Adoni as MLA.

  8. Vinay

    Lokesh babu 60 lakhs theesukoni teacher tho JUMP ayyaadaa~

    Baalayya babu… Mee alludu gaaru teacher tho kakkurthi paddaadu antaa:-D

    • subba

      I called my friends and relatives from more than 100 people of Tirupathi, Anantapur, Rayadurgam, Rayachoti , Rajampet and Kodur…most of them already decided to cast their votes to YSRCP. I convinced only to a few. I hope, we will get atleast 95 % of votes from my friends and relatives.

  9. Ram

    Part I – The bus to Mumbai
    – Palagummi Sainath is one of the two recipients of the A.H. Boerma Award, 2001, granted for his contribution in changing the nature of the development debate on food, hunger and rural development in the Indian media.

    He migrants fleeing the desperate conditions in Mahbubnagar, seeking a meagre living in faraway places

    June 2003, Mahbubnagar bus depot, Telangana, AP – The mercury is coming up on 46°, maybe 47°C as the passengers arrive. It’s the bus to Mumbai and its 58 seats will be more than full. Perhaps at the starting point itself.

    It’s a temperature at which you hate everybody and arguments driven by colourful prose ring out in the bus depot (and on the buses). The travellers, like lakhs of others in this poorest of Andhra Pradesh’s districts, are voting with their feet. Most of them are tiny farmers and landless workers. The biggest group consists of Lambada adivasis. There are many poor dalits too. All getting out of a situation they find intolerable. In some estimates, close to a third of the district’s populace could be working outside it just now.

    Since they’re doing so in May, the cliché of drought presents itself at once. The problem with that notion is that an even larger number of people migrate from here in the period from November to January.

    There are three unusual passengers on the Mumbai bus today. Ramulu, Secretary of the Andhra Pradesh Agricultural Workers Union in this district. Venugopal, a reporter with Prajashakti, a Telugu daily. And yours truly. This way, the travellers are our captives. For some hours, anyway. Now we can check if they are “fleeing the drought” that’s believed to be the sole cause of distress here.

    Why check? And why Mahbubnagar? Because it’s less than a hundred kilometres from the State capital. Which is where the country’s most celebrated chief minister sits. The crisis in the State’s agriculture — and governance — is real. It has gripped this district for some time now. But with a national media reluctant to see that Andhra Pradesh is somewhat bigger than Hyderabad, Mr. Naidu’s policies have not faced the scrutiny they deserve.

    The extent of the distress-driven exodus is not agreed on, though. “There have been migrations from Mahbubnagar for a long time,” says District Collector Madhusudhan Rao. And in that sense, he’s right. However, he sees no reason to conclude that they have been much worse this season. In fact, “more work and grain is reaching the villages in this period”.

    Are migrations no greater, really?

    The bus is already full as early as an hour before departure. A couple of stop sfurther on, the vehicle will be packed. Children are among the passengers

    When I tried making it to Mumbai from here in 1993, I was told then there was one bus from the region weekly. Today, there are 32 to 34 buses a week going straight to Mumbai from here. If the two more routes the Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation is planning come through, that number could cross 45 buses weekly.

    Then there are the private bus services to Mumbai. And tens of thousands also take the trains each season. More have done so this year. All three trains going to Mumbai via Thandur are running full every day. “About 65 per cent of this village has gone out looking for work on those buses,” Chennaiah had laughed. That was in Kanimetta village of the Kothakota mandal the day before. He himself was a low-level labour recruiter. “That route to Mumbai is our lifeline.” “Mumbai” really means several stops in Maharashtra, including Pune and Thane.

    People are leaving Mahbubnagar in very large numbers. Many do so each year, anyway, as the Collector points out. But the flow has been getting worse in recent years. And it’s certainly heavier in this one.

    A large part of the RTC’s revenue here comes from the Mumbai route. And it’s clear that there are often over 100 passengers on those 58-seat buses. Which means some people are standing for much of that 18-hour journey. And then there are the huge numbers from this district heading for Hyderabad. Also, to at least 30 other destinations ranging from Gujarat to Rajasthan, even Orissa.

    What accounts for this desperate out-migration? “Without Mumbai and Pune, we cannot survive,” says Pandu Nayak, a Lambada adivasi. In Perkiveed tanda (colony) of the Koilkonda mandal where he’s from, “Our households are deep in debt. Our children, starving”. Venkataiah, from the same tanda adds: “Any chance of agriculture here is finished. The costs are simply too high. If you are a labourer, it’s worse. In a month, you cannot find more than three or four days of work. All this makes life too hard. And now there is no water either. The government does nothing.” (“Venkataiah” is not at all a typical Lambada name. But many in that community adopt such “mainstream” names when they venture out. Letting people know you’re an adivasi is asking to be exploited.)

    What he’s telling us pretty much matches with what we’ve already seen. In the villages of Gurrakonda, Kondapur or Vepur, for instance. People here are in deep distress. What little work there is, is in the hands of contractors who have cornered government projects. They prefer labourers from outside as such a group would be more submissive. Hence, not many from the district can find work here. Mahbubnagar’s workers have been the backbone of some of the toughest construction projects in dozens of cities in other States. There, their labour is sought after. Here, they are kept idle. However, the same contractors of Telangana will use thousands of these men and women in Rajasthan or Orissa. Cut off and alone in those States, they are more dependent and pliant.

    Countless households lie locked up. Thousands of others have just the oldest member of the family left behind. The mass migrations destroy any chance of education for the children who accompany their parents for months at a time. (This is A.P.’s worst district in terms of literacy.) While agriculture has done badly countrywide, it has sunk in this State. And that for some time now. Growth in agriculture last year was minus 17.06 per cent.

    And it wasn’t just the drought. Mahbubnagar has done badly in good monsoon years, too. Other States have faced worse droughts without agriculture caving in to the extent it has in Andhra Pradesh. Often, too, migrants are leaving from relatively water surplus regions of the State. The country has seen many policies hostile to small farmers and landless workers this past decade. But here, they’ve been extra harsh. This State leads in farmers’ suicides.

    There’s a steely ruthlessness towards the rural poor. The year 2001 saw rice exported to overseas markets at Rs. 5.45 a kilogram. It was a time of widespread hunger and distress. Yet, the State sold rice to its own poor at Rs. 6.40 a kg. Some of the “exports” were rejected as “unfit for humans”. It was after this that food-for-work programmes began here in that season. Huge power tariff hikes, soaring input costs, fake pesticides, all these brought small farmers to their knees. Massive corruption in the food-for-work-programme hasn’t helped either. It’s all added up to an awful crisis.

    Labourers from Mahbubnagar travel to nearly 30 destinations across the country to find work. Meanwhile, contractors bring in workers from other States to work in Mahbubnagar.

    Debt-driven small farmers and landless workers have left this district in larger numbers this season. About two lakh people migrating seasonally has never been seen as an issue. The estimates of those on the move now vary vastly. From six lakhs to eight to 10 lakhs, according to claims in the Telugu press. Where they are going, there is at least better money. “Yes, we earn more in Mumbai than here,” says Venkataiah. “But the moment we are back we have to pay our creditors much of what we save.” He could earn up to Rs. 250 in a single day in Mumbai as a carpenter. And he finds work on “maybe 15 days in a month. Twenty if I’m lucky”. However “don’t forget our loans here”, he says. That lands them in an unending trap. Every single person going to Mumbai is also in debt. “Whatever we earn in Mumbai, most of that goes in repaying our loans.”

    We are on the road to Mumbai. Even as we sit in different parts of the bus, speaking to migrants, drivers Fashiuddin and Sattar prove a mine of information. They’ve done this route many times and know their passengers. Fashiuddin gives us a virtual disaster tour. He points to streams that have died, tanks that have dried. The lack of repairs to tanks and canals. The devastated fields, the impossibility of keeping your farm running. “These are really hard working people, sir. But who cares for them? They cannot find work here. There is nothing done to give them employment. They are poor and in debt. On top of all of that comes the drought.” He’s clear that there is a significant man-made element to the crisis. “If only there was an attempt to give them some work,” he says. “That’s why they go to Mumbai,” he adds. “Most of them will go and work in building construction, brick making and roads.”

    Labourers from Mahbubnagar travel to nearly 30 destinations across the country to find work. Meanwhile, contractors bring in workers from other States to work in Mahbubnagar.

    Patterns change according to where more construction is taking place. “Eighty per cent of this bus will empty at Pune,” predicts Sattar. He’s speaking as he helps a young woman with a two-month old baby board the bus at a stop. There’s a delay, with several tearful family farewells enacted at the same time. Sattar mixes sympathy with an ability to plug the farewell routines swiftly.

    Our surprise find on board is M. Ganesh, a 20-year-old student. A Telugu whose family is in Mahbubnagar, he studies in Mumbai and stays there with his brother.

    Ganesh is proud to be a card-carrying Shiv Sainik.

    He is a bit bewildered when we ask him about Sena chief Thackeray’s latest call for ridding Mumbai of “outsiders”, especially poor ones landing up in the metro seeking work. “I’ve heard nothing about this,” he says. “I’ve been away. But I will enquire about it when I get there.”

    In their destination towns, the migrants will live in appalling conditions. On the street, in soul-breaking slums or, at best, in filthy chawls. “Still, it’s better than going hungry here,” says Nagesh Goud on the bus. “At least we earn something.” Increasingly, a large part of that something gets chewed up in medical costs. One of the biggest problems faced by the district’s poor workers is rising health expenses.

    Every migrant you speak to confirms he or she has had more than one episode of jaram (fever). “A visit to a doctor in Mumbai could cost between Rs. 40 to Rs. 100,” says Nagesh. “That’s not counting the medicines.” The children fall ill very often. Most people cannot cope with the medical costs. And many have taken ailments from the cities back home to their villages. The general immunity of a population that’s undernourished and overworked seems to be in decline. Yet, many more venture out to evade hunger and misery.

    With a population of some 34 lakhs and perhaps close to a third of that ending up outside, Mahbubnagar is in big trouble. Some other districts, too, face similar hardships. Software is not the only thing A.P. exports. Nor hi-tech brains to the United States. Misery-driven migrations, hunger, and distress are among its other major products.

  10. Ram

    Part II – The wrong route out?

    The complex contractor-maistry system, the devastation of agriculture, an ineffective food-for-work programme, debt and debilitating mass migrions – these are an explosive mix. P Sainath continues his journey with the migrant exodus from Mahbubnagar

    June 2003 – The bus we’re on is one of about 34 leaving the Mahbubnagar region direct for Mumbai each week. That’s against just about one a week, a decade ago. People are leaving in droves.

    Drought? Mahbubnagar does have a problem. Quite a bit of that, though, is about the control, distribution and use of water. At 634 mm, the average rainfall of the last 14 years here is close to 30 mm above normal. Those, at least, are the official numbers. There have been deficit years. And a couple of truly awful ones — as in a lot of other districts. This year, District Collector Madhusudhan Rao says, “the deficit is eight per cent so far”. Unpleasant, but not crushing.

    However, it hurts a lot more when that comes atop the many other problems Mahbubnagar has. Problems that are not seasonal. For instance, a social backwardness that helps hold down lakhs of people in bondage. (This is a district where some workers still have to present their landlord with a pair of sandals each year. Where teashops routinely use separate glasses for dalits and upper caste customers.) Our bus has more than a few dalit passengers. None of them can enter the temples in their villages. Forget about having their weddings in them.

    Or take debt. Every migrant on our bus is steeped in it. “We’ll be paying that forever”, says Venkataiah, a Lambada adivasi. with a rueful smile. “How can we ever make it up?”

    The huge lack of employment in the district hits everything. Even the women’s self help groups (SHGs) at the village level. “Each member is to put one rupee daily from her earnings into the group fund”, Subhadramma had told us in Vepur. “In theory that’s fine”, this landless worker had said. “One rupee a day, thirty days, thirty rupees. But when we earn only Rs. 12 or Rs. 15 a day, that single rupee counts. So what happens when we find work for less than ten days in the month?” What happens is that the SHG flounders. With many members migrating — and several others borrowing to make their payments. With their spouses running up other debts, meanwhile.

    It’s a district where mass human migrations have destroyed the chance of large numbers of children becoming literate, let alone getting an education. “Of course we take the small ones and go”, Sarnamma had told us in Gurrakonda village. “How can we leave them behind?” With their parents on the move for up to nine months a year, these children will end up an army of hard-core illiterates. Their chances of climbing out of poverty, devastated. Every family on the bus has at least one very small child with it. Often more.

    It’s a district where a small group of powerful feudals controls most resources. Including water. The shortages of water for the poor often arise from this control. Unequal sharing further shatters the small farms. Even if they are not big ‘droughts’ in an absolute sense, these shortages cause huge damage. They certainly lead to even more out-migration.

    Development here has often been based on strategies that have boomeranged. Maybe on plans once aimed at a more prosperous section that have also caught on down the line. With the poor imitating the rich. Every small farmer you meet has spent a fortune on borewells. “That is a major cost”, Chandraiah, a farmer had told us in Gurrakonda. He still thinks it’s a good idea to sink more. Even though, “Yes, that has been a big route to debt”.

    Every migrant on our bus is steeped in debt. “We’ll be paying that forever”, says Venkataiah, a Lambada adivasi. with a rueful smile. “How can we ever make it up?”

    The focus here has rarely been on equity or a fair deal for the poor. In water, its been more about extraction. As Collector Madhusudhan Rao’s figures show: “In the mid-1980s, the district had 97 per cent open (or traditional) wells. Just three per cent borewells. By 2001-02, that figure was reversed. Now it was 97 per cent borewells and three per cent open wells”. Desperation has also driven the borewells deeper. Debt has swollen with their number.

    Inequality, always a feature of this region, has deepened sharply this past decade. And with it, despair. New forms of bondage have joined the old ones.

    Quite a bit of these find reflection in the labour-contract systems. And in the migrations themselves. Many of those on the bus to Mumbai are in the grip of contractors. Here in Mahbubnagar, and also often in those towns outside the state where they seek work. The old Palamuuru contract labour system, as it is called, is quite alive. But it’s also gained new features.

    There are over one million human beings from here who have at some point in their lives worked outside Mahbubnagar. All have tasted the contractor raj that runs the district. And that is an extensive, many-layered system.

    Large contractors do not directly hire labour. “They first farm out chunks of their projects to others”, says Ramulu of the Agricultural Workers Union. “For instance, if your clout has landed you a canal contract, you give out some kilometres of work on it to different sub-contractors. The sub-contractors then contact the gumpu maistrys or group labour contractors. These are men who have within their control several team leaders or maistrys who can bring dozens — some even hundreds — of workers to them. Each of these maistrys is capable of raising teams of workers from different villages”.

    “Each team has a panni maistry, or work leader who acts as a sort of disciplinarian. What the contractors do is to pay an advance to the gumpu maistry. He in turn gives out some of this to the regular maistrys, and so on down the line. Finally, a small part of the money goes to the workers who make the journey to Mumbai or elsewhere”.

    The workers might get a small advance ranging from four to ten thousand rupees. That’s a fraction of what the middlemen get along the line. The maistry recruiting in Kanimetta village could have got Rs. 20-40,000. The gumpu maistry above him, a lot more. But that small advance at the bottom binds the debt-strapped workers.

    If they’re labouring in another part of the state or within Mahbubnagar itself, they haven’t a hope of getting the minimum wage. Already, at the Jurala canal lining works, we’ve met some earning less than Rs. 45 where the wage ought to be Rs. 83. If they’re going outside the state to Mumbai, they would earn much more. But a lot of that will disappear on their return.

    “We have to pay up a good bit to our local creditors”, says Venkataiah. “That is, if they are to allow us to live in any degree of peace in the village”. Often the principal sum has been repaid many times over. But the exorbitant interest rates — 60 per cent or higher — keep them in debt. At least two-thirds of what he earns in Mumbai goes in debt repayment on his return. Besides, he’s spent a lot on health and other expenses in Mumbai. Venkataiah, at least, goes out as a carpenter. And yet he’s left with almost nothing. The less skilled ones have it much worse.

    The contractor fraternity has worked out an effective system that delivers for it. This accounts, in part, for the large numbers of people on the 34 buses that leave the region daily. The system has a simple rule. Never use local labour if you can help it, no matter how good they are.

    “Local labour tends to go to weddings and festivals”, explains Chandrashekhar Reddy. He is an outspoken and important contractor on the Jurala works project. “Labour from outside is more easy to discipline. I have workers from Bihar, Orissa and elsewhere. Where this company goes, they go”. And so, on his canal lining project, you can find workers from those states. Also many from other parts of Andhra, like Khammam. But fewer from Mahbubnagar itself.

    The contractor fraternity has worked out an effective system that delivers for it. The system has a simple rule Never use local labour if you can help it, no matter how good.

    As another contractor put it: “Outside labour does not know the local language. They are more dependent”. They are thus harder to unionise. They can be put through wretched work conditions without a chance of redress. The press tends to get mobilised, if at all, when the affected workers are local. Those from outside carry little clout. In some of the work sites, then, pregnant women have worked right up to the day of delivery. And resumed work less than ten days later.

    Mahbubnagar labour itself goes to at least 30 cities across the country. Fulfilling similar strategies for the same or different contractors over there. “We’ve built skyscrapers in Mumbai and apartment blocks in Pune”, Sailu in Kondapur village had told us. “But in Mahbubnagar we have no work”. District Collector Madhusudhan Rao lists a series of projects and works that are on in the district. He believes that “anyone who wants work in Mahbubnagar can find it now”.

    Those crowding the buses and trains believe otherwise. Employment on the projects are controlled by the contractors to whom they are given. “They won’t pay us anything liveable here”, says Nagesh Goud on the bus. Nor do the food-for-work programmes, to the extent they exist, fill the need. The long lines at the gruel centres in several villages make that clear.

    Agriculture has taken a severe beating and not just because of a drought. The rise in the costs of inputs have crushed small farmers. So has the collapse of rural credit. Bus drivers Fashiuddin and Sattar know well how many small farmers travel with them each time they take the route out of Mahbubnagar. “Farming, says Fashiuddin, is a mess.”

    “Every single cost has gone up”, Chandraiah, a farmer in Gurrakonda had told us. “A bag of ammonia phosphate costs three times what it did in 1991. The cost of paddy seed has doubled. That of power has risen manifold. Farming has become too difficult”.

    “With those costs, we need credit. But if you are a small farmer like I am, with two acres, that’s impossible”, Chennaiah in Vepur village had said. “If we go to the bank, we are rejected. But the bigger landowners are well connected. My request for Rs. 20,000 will be turned down. The landlord, however will get, say, Rs. 60,000. He uses what he needs of it. Then he loans me that Rs. 20, 000 — at a rate of interest much higher than that of the bank”.

    There’s a constant propaganda, however, that leaves quite a few villagers believing the rains, new irrigation schemes and relief works could end all their problems. It’s a claim forever drummed in by many, from the MP and MLAs and local politicians down to the village elite. Because that line results in projects. And projects result in contracts. And contracts result in money for the right people.

    Sure, the water shortage hits the poor. But Mahbubnagar’s distress is a complex mesh. It rests on one of the most oppressive and structured systems of labour exploitation. On its complicated contractor-maistry mafia. It feeds on the death of small farms driven by the policies of the last twelve years. On the crisis of agriculture itself in the region. It is fuelled by the social backwardness of centuries. And driven by the dismal human development record of the past decade. The lack of employment spurs the mass human migrations that so debilitate the district.

    “What are all those provisions doing on your dashboard”? I ask bus driver Fashiuddin as we get off. “Oh those”, he smiles. “We’ll do our own cooking when we get to the Kurla bus depot in Mumbai. I like Maharashtra — but their food! They don’t use any chilli at all unlike in our meals at home. So we take all our stuff and cook it there”. With plenty of chilli.

    At least some things about Mahbubnagar remain delightfully true to its home state.

  11. Ram

    This Is What We Paid For
    – George Joshua Richard Monbiot on May 18, 2004 about short-sighted Nara Chandra Babu Naidu and McKinsey’s Vision 2020

    Britain’s foreign aid has been used to bankroll a programme for mass starvation

    By George Monbiot. Published in the Guardian 18th May 2004

    Tony Blair has lost the election. It’s true he wasn’t standing, but we won’t split hairs. His policies have just been put to the test by an electorate blessed with a viable opposition, and crushed. In throwing him out of their lives, the voters of the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh may have destroyed the world’s most dangerous economic experiment.

    Chandrababu Naidu, the state’s chief minister, was the West’s favourite Indian. Tony Blair and Bill Clinton both visited him in Hyderabad, the state capital. Time magazine named him South Asian of the Year; the governor of Illinois created a Naidu Day in his honour, and the British government and the World Bank flooded his state with money. They loved him because he did what he was told.

    Naidu realised that to sustain power he must surrender it. He knew that as long as he gave the global powers what they wanted, he would receive the money and stature which count for so much in Indian politics. So instead of devising his own programme, he handed the job to the US consultancy company McKinsey.

    McKinsey’s scheme, “Vision 2020″, is one of those documents whose summary says one thing and whose contents quite another.(1) It begins, for example, by insisting that education and healthcare must be made available to everyone. Only later do you discover that the state’s hospitals and universities are to be privatised and funded by “user charges”.(2) It extols small businesses but, way beyond the point at which most people stop reading, reveals that it intends to “eliminate” the laws which defend them,(3) and replace small investors, who “lack motivation”, with “large corporations”.(4) It claims it will “generate employment” in the countryside, and goes on to insist that over 20 million people should be thrown off the land.(5)

    Put all these – and the other proposals for privatisation, deregulation and the shrinking of the state – together, and you see that McKinsey has unwittingly developed a blueprint for mass starvation. You dispossess 20 million farmers from the land just as the state is reducing the number of its employees and foreign corporations are “rationalising” the rest of the workforce, and you end up with millions without work or state support. “The State’s people,” McKinsey warns, “will need to be enlightened about the benefits of change.”(6)

    McKinsey’s vision was not confined to Naidu’s government. Once he had implemented these policies, Andhra Pradesh “should seize opportunities to lead other states in such reform, becoming, in the process, the benchmark state.”(7) Foreign donors would pay for the experiment, then seek to persuade other parts of the developing world to follow Naidu’s example.

    There is something familiar about all this, and McKinsey have been kind enough to jog our memories. Vision 2020 contains 11 glowing references to Chile’s experiment in the 1980s. General Pinochet handed the economic management of his country to a group of neoliberal economists known as the Chicago Boys. They privatised social provision, tore up the laws protecting workers and the environment and handed the economy to multinational companies. The result was a bonanza for big business, and a staggering growth in debt, unemployment, homelessness and malnutrition.(8) The plan was funded by the United States in the hope that it could be rolled out around the world.

    Pinochet’s understudy was bankrolled by Britain. In July 2001 Clare Short, then secretary of state for development, finally admitted to parliament that, despite numerous official denials, Britain was funding Vision 2020.(9) Blair’s government has financed the state’s economic reform programme, its privatisation of the power sector and its “centre for good governance” (which means as little governance as possible).(10) Our taxes also fund the “implementation secretariat” for the state’s privatisation programme. The secretariat is run, at Britain’s insistence, by the far-right business lobby group the Adam Smith Institute.(11) The money for all this comes out of Britain’s foreign aid budget.

    It is not hard to see why Blair’s government is doing this. As Stephen Byers revealed when he was secretary of state for trade and industry, “the UK Government has designated India as one of the UK’s 15 campaign markets.”(12) The campaign is to expand the opportunities for British capital. The people of Andhra Pradesh know what this means: they call it “the return of the East India Company”.

    This isn’t the only aspect of British history which is being repeated in Andhra Pradesh. There’s something uncanny about the way in which the scandals that surrounded Tony Blair during his first term in office are recurring there. Bernie Ecclestone, the Formula 1 boss who gave Labour £1 million and later received an exemption from the ban on tobacco advertising, was negotiating with Naidu to bring his sport to Hyderabad. I have been shown the leaked minutes of a state cabinet meeting on January 10th this year.(13) McKinsey, they reveal, instructed the cabinet that Hyderabad should be a “world class futuristic city with Formula 1 as a core component.” To make it viable, however, there would be a “state support requirement of Rs400-600 crs”(4 billion to 6 billion rupees).(14) This means a state subsidy for Formula 1 of £50million to £75m a year. It is worth noting that thousands of people in Andhra Pradesh now die of malnutrition-related diseases because Naidu had previously cut the subsidy for food.

    Then the minutes become even more interesting. Ecclestone’s Formula 1, they note, should be exempted from the Indian ban on tobacco advertising. Mr Naidu had already “addressed the PM as well as the Health Minister in this regard” and was hoping to enact “state legislation creating an exemption to the Act”. (15)

    The Hinduja brothers, the businessmen facing criminal charges in India who were given British passports after Peter Mandelson intervened on their behalf, have also been sniffing round Vision 2020. Another set of leaked minutes I have obtained shows that in 1999 their representatives held a secret meeting in London with the Indian attorney-general and the British government’s export credit guarantee department, to help them obtain the backing required to build a power station under Naidu’s privatisation programme.(16) When the attorney-general began lobbying the Indian government on their behalf, this caused yet another Hinduja scandal.

    The results of the programme we have been funding are plain to see. During the hungry season, hundreds of thousands of people in Andhra Pradesh are now kept alive on gruel supplied by charities.(17) Last year hundreds of children died in an encephalitis outbreak because of the shortage of state-run hospitals.(18) The state government’s own figures suggest that 77% of the population has fallen below the poverty line.(19) The measurement criteria are not consistent, but this appears to be a massive rise. In 1993 there was one bus a week taking migrant workers from a depot in Andhra Pradesh to Mumbai. Today there are 34. (20) The dispossessed must reduce themselves to the transplanted coolies of Blair’s new empire.

    Luckily, democracy still functions in India. In 1999, Naidu’s party won 29 seats, leaving Congress with five. Last week those results were precisely reversed. We can’t yet vote Tony Blair out of office in Britain, but in Andhra Pradesh they have done the job on our behalf.

  12. Ram

    Sincere Officer – Chief EC Banwarlal

  13. How is the situation in Macherla and Prathipadu?

  14. Ram

    ‘పోస్టర్’పై క్షమాపణ చెప్పండి – బాబు, దాడి, రామోజీలకు సాయిరెడ్డి లీగల్ నోటీసులు

    హైదరాబాద్, న్యూస్‌లైన్: తెలుగుదేశం పార్టీ అధ్యక్షుడు నారా చంద్రబాబునాయుడు, శాసన మండలిలో టీడీపీ ఫ్లోర్ లీడర్ దాడి వీరభద్రరావు, ఈనాడు దినపత్రిక చీఫ్ ఎడిటర్ సి.హెచ్.రామోజీరావులకు ఆడిటర్ వేణుంబాక విజయసాయిరెడ్డి శనివారం లీగల్ నోటీసులు పంపారు. అవాస్తవాలు, అభూత కల్పనలతో లెక్కలు తయారు చేసి ఘోరీ+గజనీ = జగన్ పేరుతో పోస్టర్ ముద్రించిన తెలుగుదేశం పార్టీ అధ్యక్షుడి హోదాలో చంద్రబాబుకు, ఆ పోస్టర్‌ను విడుదల చేసి నోటికొచ్చినట్లు మాట్లాడిన దాడి వీరభద్రరావుకు, వాస్తవాలు తెలుసుకోకుండా పోస్టర్‌ను యథాతథంగా ఈనాడు పత్రికలో ప్రచురించిన రామోజీరావుకు ఆయన లీగల్ నోటీసులు జారీ చేశారు. రాజకీయ, వ్యక్తిగత కక్షలో భాగంగా పరువునష్టం కలిగించే విధంగా ఈ పోస్టర్‌ను ముద్రించారని, దానిని చంద్రబాబు ఆదేశాల మేరకు దాడి వీరభద్రరావు పత్రికలకు విడుదల చేశారని, ఓ కుట్రలో భాగంగా రామోజీ ఆయన పత్రికైన ఈనాడులో ప్రచురించారని సాయిరెడ్డి ఆ నోటీసుల్లో పేర్కొన్నారు.

  15. Ram

    టీడీపీ గుర్తింపును రద్దు చేయండి – భన్వర్‌లాల్‌కు సోమయాజులు లేఖ

    హైదరాబాద్, న్యూస్‌లైన్: ‘‘వైఎస్సార్ కాంగ్రెస్ పార్టీ, ఆ పార్టీ అధినేత జగన్‌మోహన్‌రెడ్డి ప్రతిష్టను దెబ్బతీయడమే లక్ష్యంగా ఆయనపై తెలుగుదేశం పార్టీ అభూతకల్పనలు, అవాస్తవాలను ప్రచారం చేస్తోంది. మూడు దశాబ్దాల పై చిలుకు చరిత్ర ఉన్న టీడీపీ.. వైఎస్సార్ కాంగ్రెస్ పార్టీ, జగన్‌ల పరువుప్రతిష్టలను మంటగలపడమే పనిగా పెట్టుకుంది. ఆ క్రమంలో అత్యంత దుర్మార్గపూరితమైన ఆరోపణలు చేస్తోంది. అవాస్తవ ప్రచారానికి పూనుకుంటోంది. ప్రజాస్వామ్యానికి అత్యంత ప్రమాదకారిగా పరిణమించిన తెలుగుదేశం పార్టీ గుర్తింపును తక్షణమే రద్దు చేయండి’’ అని వైఎస్సార్ కాంగ్రెస్ పార్టీ రాజకీయ వ్యవహారాల కమిటీ సభ్యుడు డి.ఎ.సోమయాజులు రాష్ట్ర ముఖ్య ఎన్నికల అధికారి భన్వర్‌లాల్‌కు విజ్ఞప్తి చేశారు.

  16. Ram

    Kavali: Mekapati garu

  17. Ram

    Ongole: ప్లీనరీలో చెప్పిన ప్రతీ పథకం అమలవుతుంది : విజయమ్మ

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