The Agriculture Minister of Telangana, S Niranjan Reddy, said in an interview that the state government has made farming a profitable profession. In the past, farmers had to hypothecate their gold and silver to money-lenders to buy seeds and fertilizers, leading to high interest rates and debt. The movement for separate statehood was fought with the slogan of ‘Water, Funds and Jobs’ and after the formation of Telangana, the government prioritized speedy completion of pending irrigation projects. The Kaleswaram Lift Irrigation Project and Palamuru Ranga Reddy Lift Irrigation Project became a reality in three years, and water started flowing into farmers’ fields. The government also restored about 26,000 village tanks and water bodies under Mission Kakatiya, providing farmers with access to water.
To create new confidence in the minds of farmers, the government introduced a scheme to provide financial assistance of Rs 10,000 per acre annually for both crop seasons. The government has disbursed Rs 6519 crore directly into farmers’ accounts so far. Additionally, the Rythu Bhima scheme was introduced to provide financial relief to farmer’s families in the event of the death of the head of the family. The state government is paying the entire premium in case of any farmer’s death and the family is paid Rs 5 lakh insurance coverage under this scheme. Moreover, the government provides 24-hour free quality power to farmers.
Telangana is the only state in the country implementing such innovative schemes, and it is the only government considering ‘Farmer as King’ (Rythe Raju).