Amid growing talks of early elections to Telangana Legislative Assembly, Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao on Saturday met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi.
Though officially it was stated that Rao called on the Prime Minister to discuss various pending issues pertaining to the state, the meeting assumed significance in the wake of hints of early polls by the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) chief.
This is Rao's second meeting with Modi this month and the third in many months.
It also comes two days after Telangana government's Chief Advisor Rajiv Sharma met Election Commissioner Ashok Lavasa.
KCR, as the TRS chief is popularly known, had dropped hints that the Assembly elections may be held early. The state elections are originally scheduled along with the Lok Sabha polls next year.
The TRS leader has already stated that the party will announce its candidates next month.
Meanwhile, according to a statement from the Chief Minister's Office, KCR met Modi on Saturday and discussed various issues pertaining to the state pending for clearances and approvals from the Centre.
He urged the Prime Minister to raise the annual borrowing limit for Telangana by an additional 0.50% of the Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) as recommended by the 14th Finance Commission.
KCR said the state government has fulfilled the conditions laid down for availing the additional fiscal space of 0.5% of GSDP.
As per the recommendations of the Finance Commission, the states which are in revenue surplus are eligible for raising market borrowings up to 3.5% of GSDP. Accordingly, Government of India had conveyed its consent to Telangana state to raise market borrowings up to 3.5% of GSDP during the year 2016-17 and 2017-18. In this connection, it is brought to your notice that, as per the accounts finalized by Principal Accountant General (A&E), Telangana, the State of Telangana for the financial year 2017-18 also ended with a revenue surplus of Rs.3,459.37 crores. The State continues to be revenue surplus for the fourth consecutive year,â€ť the Chief Minister said in his representation submitted to the PM.
"There is a significant jump in the expenditure commitments of the state on account of flagship programmes like irrigation and provision of drinking water to every household. All of the works have reached an advance stage and are about to give benefit to a large number of people in the state," he added.
KCR also sought early nod for the new zonal system approved by the state cabinet recruitment in government departments, release of Rs 450 crore for the development of backward districts, release of additional FRBM funds, release of the Central share of interest on the loans to be given to women societies and farmers.
â€śThe AP State Reorganisation Act provides for special assistance for the development of backward districts in the successor states of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. The first, second and third installments of assistance were released amounting to Rs.450 crore each at Rs.50 crore for 9 districts of Telangana. The Utilisation Certificates for the amounts released were also submitted. The fourth installment is yet to be released,â€ť KCRâ€™s statement said.
Other issues that came up for discussion included the bifurcation of High Court, funds for regional Ring Road and allotment of Defence lands for building a new secretariat.