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Telangana State to sell land to pay farmer loans

Hyderabad, Aug 11 (): Telangana State has decided to sell government-owned lands to raise the shortfall of Rs 15,000 crore that it has to pay through waiver of farm loans. It made a poll promise that if TRS came to power, farmers in Telangana who owed loans up to Rs 1 lakh would get a waiver.

The total amount comes to Rs 19,000 crore. RBI refused to pick up the bill and finally agreed to do so in three drought-affected districts in Telangana, that amounted to Rs 4000 crore. The balance Rs 15,000 crore has to come up from the Telangana coffers. The farmers are taking to street protests and demanding that fresh loans be issued.

Telangana ministry is facing a state-wide protest that is likely to blow up. At this juncture, the Telangana government has asked revenue authorities to identify land that it owns and lying vacant in and around Hyderabad. Selling land to real estate is the only option to raise money quickly.

As part of this, DBR mills in Tank Bund road in Hyderabad are to be sold for Rs 1000 crore. The property is lying unused for two decades and the land was leased by the Nizam. The land is under litigation as the mill workers claim the land as compensation for the wages they were not paid and some individuals have put up fences claiming ownership rights. The government sees this as a potential area as it is located next to Hotel Marriot.

Real estate developers would grab this property if Telangana government clears it of all legal hurdles. KCR is finding it hard to tackle the angry farmers who feel that Telangana Rashtra Samiti is going back on poll promise.

RBI which controls the state-owned banks decided to not pick up the bill and said that only in drought hit areas it would be willing to waive the loans. Andhra Pradesh CM Naidu who made a similar promise faced hostile farmers during his tour of the State.

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