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Dubbaka byelections on November 3

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The Election Commission of India has decided to conduct the byelections for Dubbaka – the lone vacant Assembly seat in Telangana- on November 3. The Election Commission of India will be holding by-polls for 53 Assembly seats across the country on the same day.

The notification for the Dubbaka byelections will be released on October 9, while nominations should be filed on or before October 16. Nomination withdrawal will be accepted on or before October 19. The polling for Dubbaka will be held on November 3 and the counting of votes will take place on November 10.

Dubbaka fell vacant after its former TRS MLA S Ramalinga Reddy died due to a heart attack. The political parties have already entered into the campaign mode. Finance Minister T Harish Rao has already made several visits to Dubbaka constituency. The TRS is making all efforts to retain the seat, while the Congress party has started conducting meetings with local leaders. Siddipet District Congress Committee president T Narsa Reddy was among the contenders for the ticket, while BJP could field M Raghunandana Rao for the seat. Telangana Jana Samithi (TJS) led by Prof. Kodandaram had also announced that it would contest the elections.

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Land litigations will be resolved, says KTR

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Municipal Administration Minister KT Rama Rao on Saturday assured that litigation related to non-farm lands in rural areas will be resolved and that there will be two separate pass books and all the registrations would be done based on the Dharani portal.

The minister had a video conference meeting with officials on the the new Revenue Act at GHMC office on Saturday. He stated the government was trying to provide the ownership rights to the property owners of the people living in Hyderabad city and that the government would ensure there would be no hassles in buying or selling of properties Rama Rao asked the public representatives to participate actively in the registration of properties in Dharani portal for the next 15 days.

The minister said that the intention of the government was to provide ownership rights to the people of the city especially poor and the middle class sections. There are estimated 24.50 lakh properties in Hyderabad and there are issues related to to the ownership rights.

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NGT directs Telangana SPCB to submit report on muck at Polavaram

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In a setback to the Telangana government, the National Green Tribunal on Monday directed the Telangana State Pollution Control Board (TSPCB) to submit a status report on a plea alleging that muck was being dumped illegally at the Polavaram dam in Andhra Pradesh.

The NGT heard a petition filed by one Pentapati Pulla Rao. In the plea, the petitioner alleged that illegal dumping of muck was taking place during the construction of the Indira Sagar Polavaram Multipurpose Project which was damaging the environment. Pulla Rao counsel Sravan Kumar argued that several environmental violations took place at the site. The petitioner contended that waste material was being dumped in agricultural lands near the Polavaram project which was declared as a national project under the AP Reorganisation Act, 2014.

Hearing the arguments, the NGT has directed the pollution control board to submit a report by January 11 next year. The NGT had earlier ordered a four-member committee to conduct an inspection near the Polavaram dam and submit a report. It had constituted a committee comprising representatives of the Central Pollution Control Board, additional principal chief conservator of forests, the State Pollution Control Board, and the district magistrate to give a report on the factual aspects.

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Why are NDA allies resigning, asks KTR

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The Union government on Sunday passed crucial bills in Parliament, including the Agriculture Bill with Prime Minister Narendra Modi terming it a “watershed moment in the history of Indian agriculture”.

The Prime Minister later took to his Twitter handle. “A watershed moment in the history of Indian agriculture! Congratulations to our hardworking farmers on the passage of key bills in Parliament, which will ensure a complete transformation of the agriculture sector as well as empower crores of farmers,” he tweeted.

The Telangana government on September 9 introduced several legislations in the Assembly, intended to overhaul the revenue administration by simplifying agriculture and non-agricultural land transactions, preventing land encroachments, and eradicating corruption at the grassroot level. The IT Minister believes that the Telangana government’s revenue bills did not receive any backlash from the farming community, but the central government’s Agriculture Bills had faced protests from various quarters, mainly from farmers.

On Monday, IT and MAUD minister K T Rama Rao took a jibe at the Modi government for passing the agriculture bills. Taking to his Twitter handle, KTR commented, “When Telangana legislature passed the farmer friendly Revenue Bill last week, there was widespread jubilation and cheer among the farming community across the state. If the #Agriculture Bills2020 is truly a watershed moment, why is no farmer celebrating and why are NDA allies resigning.”

KTR was referring to the deep fissures between the ruling BJP and the Shiromani Akali Dal alliance over the farm bill. Union Food Processing Minister Harismrat Kaur had quit from the Cabinet in protest against the three farm bills calling them “anti-farmer ordinances and legislations”.

The Telangana government had been critical of the Modi government on a host of issues, mainly the Electricity Act. Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar had recently passed a resolution in the Assembly opposing the Power Bill calling it draconian law with an aim to usurp the autonomy of the state governments. KCR said the Power Bill would have an adverse impact directly on the management of the state electricity utilities. He argued that the Power Bill is against the interest of farmers and poor domestic consumers.

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Mission Bhagiratha is huge success, find out why

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Telangana now has no fluoride-affected districts ever since the government had implemented its flagship program ‘Mission Bhagiratha’ to provide safe drinking water to people.

Telangana had 967 fluoride-affected habitations as of April 1, 2015. There are no fluoride-affected districts in Telangana as of August 1, 2020, according to a report tabled in Parliament. The report about Telangana overcoming the problem of fluorosis came a month after it was ranked number one in the country under the Centre’s Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM). The state secured top ranking with 98.31 percent of households having functional tap connections.

“Number of fluoride-affected villages at the time of formation of Telangana was 967. After the successful implementation of the Mission Bhagiratha, the number has come down to zero,” tweeted Municipal Administration and Urban Development Minister KT Rama Rao on Friday. He tagged the list of states with arsenic and fluoride affected habitation as tabled in the Parliament. Under Mission Bhagiratha, the government had built a water treatment plant at a cost of Rs 436 crore to provide safe drinking water to 585 villages affected by fluorosis, KT Rama Rao said.

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KCR makes a powerful speech in Assembly

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Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao on Tuesday moved a resolution in the Assembly demanding that the central government withdraw the Power Bill terming it a draconian law aimed at usurping the powers and functions of the state government.

Rao said he spoke to CMs of non-BJP ruled states to fight unitedly in Parliament against the Power Bill. He strongly opposed the Centre’s proposed bill to amend the Electricity Act which he said would have an adverse impact directly on the management of the state electricity utilities.

He termed the Power Bill introduced in Parliament as a draconian law meant to usurp the rights of the state government to supply power to the farming and domestic sector at subsidized tariffs.

Expressing concern over the Power Bill, Rao said it has a provision for the Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) of subsidy provided to consumers, particularly to the agriculture and domestic sectors. “This would work against the interest of farmers and very poor domestic consumers. Mode of payment of the subsidy should be left to the state government. We will oppose the Bill at any cost. Its provisions are draconian. It usurps the rights of the states,” KCR told the Assembly.

Rao the Power Bill would have an adverse impact directly on the management of State Electricity utilities. He said the proposed Power Bill would take away certain functions and powers of the State government. Proposals like the appointment of State Electricity Regulatory Commission by a selection committee constituted by the Centre and entrusting the responsibilities to a neighbouring State Electricity Regulatory Commissions under certain circumstances were against the federal spirit.

Rao also said that the powers of extending subsidy to farmers and appointing ERCs too would be taken away by the Central government once the Bill is passed in both the Houses of Parliament. He has appealed to the four elected BJP MPs from Telangana to support the state government’s fight against the union government’s Power Bill.

Addressing the Assembly on Tuesday, Rao said he is appealing to Prime Minister Narendra Modi with folded hands to withdraw the Power Bill.

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BJP demands probe into Rakul’s drug links

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The State BJP leaders on Saturday demanded a thorough investigation into the drug nexus of Tollywood in the wake of reports that Rakul Preet Singh figured in the list of actors allegedly named by Rhea Chakraborty during interrogation by the Narcotic Control Bureau (NCB).

BJP spokesman K Krishna Sagar Rao said he will write to Union Home Minister Amit Shah and Minister of State for Home Kishan Reddy seeing a probe into the drug racket while urging Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao to initiate a thorough investigation.

“Rakul Preet Singh is Telangana brand ambassador. She had been preaching against drug abuse, through state government-sponsored publicity programs. This shows the hypocrisy of such actors. How can the government continue to have her as the brand ambassador of Telangana,” he said.

“Many such drug users in Tollywood are bad role models, he added. He also said IPS officer Akun Sabharwal had done a thorough investigation into the drug mafia influence in not just Tollywood, but the probe was water-down because of political pressure.

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SC sends notice to ‘T’ on Ayushman Bharat

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Telangana BJP senior leader Perala Shekhar on Friday moved the Supreme Court complaining that the KCR government has not been implementing the central government’s health scheme Ayushman Bharat Yojana.

Hearing the petition, the Supreme Court issued notice to the Telangana government asking it to explain why it has failed to implement the Ayushman Bharat Yojana scheme. The apex court issued notices to Telangana Chief Secretary Somesh Kumar and gave two weeks’ time to the state government to file a counter-affidavit.

Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao had rejected the Ayushman Bharat scheme in favor of the state’s Aarogya Sri medical health cover scheme for the poor. In the past, he had stated that the state government is not interested in wasting public money on central schemes which are not beneficial to the people. KCR also claimed that Arogya Sri was far more beneficial and had a wider outreach than the Ayushman Bharat scheme.

In the petition, BJP leader Shekar appealed to the Supreme Court to direct the KCR government to implement the central government’s Ayushman Bharat scheme that covers corona treatment. He also contended that the Ayushman Bharat covers various serious ailments which are not included in the Arogya Sri and provided treatment free of cost to the patients. He alleged that the TS government was denying medical facility extended by the union government to Telangana people. In the petition, he also pointed out that several non-BJP ruling states like Odisha and West Bengal were not implementing the central health scheme.

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9,000 acres Pharma Hub to boost Hyderabad revenue

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Telangana CM in waiting KT Rama Rao has said in the State Assembly that Hyderabad is going to get another massive Project with potential to create thousands of job opportunities soon. Already, 9,000 acres have acquired for the new Pharmacy City to come in the vicinity of Telangana Capital.

KTR asked for support from all the organisations concerned to give support for acquiring some more land needed for the one of the world’s biggest pharma hubs. Hyderabad is already an internationally renowned fast track city. With the addition of Pharma hub, it will see much more prosperity in the coming years.

Undoubtedly, revenue generation in Hyderabad has reached such gigantic proportions that it has given the confidence required for the government to spend heavily on big projects like Kaleswaram lift project.

It goes without saying that in this one respect, AP CM Jaganmohan Reddy is not at all following his Telangana counterpart in developing one single capital with huge huge potential for revenue generation. Big industrial hubs can be attracted easily to metro cities while lots of incentives will have to be given for bringing them to remote areas. To bring Kia Motors to Anantapur, AP had to give many concessions which became a political issue now.

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NGT team inspects old Secretariat demolition site

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A team of National Green Tribunal officials inspected the demolition of old Secretariat building.

The team visited the demolition site to assess if the state government failed to follow the environmental norms. The NGT team’s visited the demolition site following a petition filed by Congress MP A Revanth Reddy appealing to the green tribunal to halt the demolition of the Old Secretariat building. A NGT panel comprising officials from the Central Pollution Control Board and Telangana PCB visited the site to study the environmental aspects.

Earlier, hearing Revanth Reddy’s plea, the NGT had set up a panel to look into the aspect of the management of debris. Hearing the petition on July 20, the NGT refused to halt the demolition of the old Secretariat building stating that the matter was already in the High Court and therefore it cannot intervene.

The panel would also look into the aspects of managing the construction and demolition (C&D) debris. The Committee will submit its report within two months. The next NGT hearing has been posted to September 25. Meanwhile, the Chief Minister will hold a meeting with officials and Chennai-based architects on Tuesday. He is expected to finalize the design for the new Secretariat building.

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KCR introduces New Revenue Bill in Telangana Assembly

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In a significant move towards enacting the New Revenue Act to revamp the Revenue System in Telangana, Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao on Wednesday introduced the new Revenue Bill calling it as Telangana Rights in Lands and Pattadar Pass Books Bill 2020.

Addressing the Assembly on Wednesday, the Chief Minister said the objective of bringing the New Act is to provide transparency and corruption-free land-related services to citizens, including registration of property documents. Introducing the Bill, KCR said it is his “Purva Janma Sukrutham” that he could introduce the new Revenue Bill. “The objective of the new act is to check corruption. The New Revenue Act will make land transactions transparent and ensure that there would be zero scope for corruption for any official work to be done. The government will ensure that all transactions are done in a transparent manner. It will help in eliminating corruption and provide hassle-free service to farmers and the people in general. Every inch of land would be accounted for. The government will leave no room for corruption or laxity,” he told the Assembly

Earlier, the Telangana government has abolished the VRO system in the revenue department as part of reforms.

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End of VRO era in Telangana

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The Telangana government on Monday decided to do away with the VRO system in the state, it is reported.

Chief Secretary Somesh Kumar instructed all the district collectors to collect the revenue records from VROs of all villages and report to the chief secretary office by 5 pm.

With the new Revenue Act offing, VRO system will be a thing of past in the revenue department. As a part of a new policy, VROs surrender all official documents in MRO office in Hasanparthy Mandal in Warangal Urban district on Monday.

Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao had made it clear that his government will not hesitate in abolishing the system of Village Reven-ue Officers (VROs) in the Revenue Department. He announced that Telangana will get a new Revenue Act. His government will not be scared of or spare any revenue staff, particularly VROs, if they go against its move to tone up revenue administration, he warned.

The Chief Minister had said, “The Patels and Patwaris were symbols of repression and replaced with the VRO system. VROs are found to be worse than the Patel and Patwari system.”

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KCR seen without mask in Assembly

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The Telangana Assembly session began on Monday. This is the first legislative session since the outbreak of COVID-19 and the Opposition is expected to corner the ruling Telangana Rastra Samiti (TRS) over its ‘failure’ to contain the spread of the disease.

Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao has introduced a resolution to condole the death of former President and Bharat Ratna Pranab Mukherjee . KCR recalled Pranab services to the nation and also his key role in awarding statehood to Telangana.

While all members are wearing masks, the Chief Minister walked inside the Assembly wearing a Kanduva. He was seen struggling to cover his mouth and nose while moving condolence resolution on the death of Pranab Mukherjee. Agriculture minister Niranjan Reddy likened the relationship between KCR and Pranab to that of a father and son. Although Niranjan Reddy had a mask, it was not on his face. It was hanging around his neck. Wearing of masks was made mandatory for all legislators.

Speaker P Srinivas Reddy asked all members to undergo mandated tests and the use face masks. He suggested the members not to share food with others and avoid touching iron and steel furniture on the House premises. All the members will have to produce Covid test results before entering the house.

The construction of irrigation projects by the Andhra Pradesh government under Rayalaseema Lift Irrigation Scheme, crop loss due to heavy rains and the fire accident in the Srisailam Hydel Project will be raised in the Assembly.

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NTR biography in 10th class textbook: NBK thanks KCR

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A biography of United Andhra Pradesh former Chief Minister Late NT Rama Rao was included in the 10th class textbooks. Overjoyed at this, actor, MLA and NTR’s son Nandamuri Balakrishna has expressed profound thanks to Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhara Rao. It is well known that KCR is an ardent and diehard fan of NTR. KCR has even made it known to the world by naming his only son after NTR. KTR full name is K Taraka Rama Rao.

In his thanksgiving, Mr. Balakrishna recalled how NTR fought for and achieved self-respect for the Telugu people in front of the whole country by opposing the unquestioned leadership of Delhi. He stood out as an outstanding Telugu personality who had left an indelible mark on the country’s political scene. NTR created many records not just in the film industry but also politics. It was possible only for NTR to challenge a national party and defeat it within eight months of entering the political scene.

KCR has included NTR’s biography and contributions to Telugu people in 10th class textbooks to express his admiration for the departed leader and actor. It goes without saying that NTR will remain an undisputed leader in the hearts of crores of people in both the Telugu States. Forming a political party singlehandedly and leading it to victory was not a small achievement by any standards.

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After water-sharing battle, AP and T now in fresh tussle

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After the war over water sharing, the KCR and Jagan governments have now locked horns over running inter-state bus services.

In the latest tussle, both the governments are differing on running inter-state buses on certain routes. The bone of contention between both the governments is the lucrative Vijayawada-Hyderabad sector. The KCR government is insisting that the Jagan government forego the profitable route operations. The transport officials of both the governments held several talks but have failed to reach an agreement on the contentious route.

With no agreement in sight, now the transport ministers of both the states are likely to hold talks on Monday to resolve the issue.

The agreement reached between both the governments on running inter-state bus services as part of the AP Reorganization Act ended in June 2019. The Covid-19 lockdown has brought a break to the inter-state bus services between the two states.

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KCR gets 21-kg Balapur laddu this year

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Hyderabad: For the first time in over 25 years, the Balapur Ganesh Utsav Samithi in Hyderabad will not auction the 21-kg laddu prasad this year.

This year Balapur Ganesh Utsav Samithi has decided to present 21 kg laddu to the Telangana State Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao, as a Ganesh Prasadam.

Each year with organising an open auction for laddu for past 26 years, this year due to Coronavirus Pandemic, the Balapur Utsav had decided to cancelled the auction and to present the laddu to CM. “This year there is no auction for laddu, we have decided to present the laddu to CM K Chandrashekhar Rao, and we are trying to take appointment,” said Niranjan Reddy, President Balapur Ganesh Utsav Samithi.

Last year ganesh laddu was auctioned for Rs 17.6 lakh and bagged by Kolan Rami Reddy, a local resident – emerged as the successful bidder, say reports. Around 19 people participated in the auction that was held ahead of the Ganesh idol immersion.

For the gold-coated laddu that weighs 21kg, Reddy quoted Rs 17.6 lakh as it was offered to him on a silver plate by the organisers.

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KTR reviews T-Hub initiatives

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IT & Industries Minister KT Rama Rao on Tuesday reviewed various initiatives of Telangana State Innovation Cell (TSIC) and T-Hub

He was accompanied by T-Hub CEO Ravi Narayen and IT Department Principal Secretary Jayesh Ranjan in Hyderabad..

KTR appreciated the T-Hub team for creating a vibrant startup ecosystem in Telangana state, but instructed the T-Hub team to operationalize the T-Hub centers in Warangal, Karimnagar and Khammam.

“Telangana today has the best innovation ecosystem in the country thanks to the state government backed organizations like TSIC, T-Hub, We-Hub, TWorks, Research & Innovation Circle of Hyderabad (RICH) and Telangana Academy for Skill and Knowledge (TASK),” KTR said.

The IT minsiter instructed the TSIC team to plan more outreach programs aimed at school going kids too. He said that the culture of innovation should be fostered from a young age. Minister also instructed Jayesh Ranjan to coordinate with the State Education Department to introduce a course credits system for students who work on innovation & startup related subjects and nstructed the officials to focus on rural innovation.

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Plea in Telangana HC to halt Rayalaseema Lift Irrigation project

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A petition was filed in the Telangana High Court opposing the Andhra Pradesh government’s Rayalaseema Lift Irrigation Scheme.

The petitioners Vamsi Chand Reddy and Srinivas argued that the Jagan government was going ahead with the project despite the Krishna River Management Board directing the Andhra Pradesh government to stop Rayalaseema project work.

The petitioners contended that the AP government had called for tenders to execute the project despite the Krishna River Management Board directive and also Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat instructions not to do so.

The petitioners also brought to the notice of the court that the Telangana government took objection to the AP government’s administrative sanction to draw and utilise six to eight TMC of water per day from the Srisailam reservoir on Krishna River.

Three firms — Navayuga Engineering Company Ltd (NECL), a joint venture of SPML – NCC, and Max Infra (I) Ltd — filed their bids and the officials held the technical evaluation of the same on August 13.

Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat had recently written a letter advising the Chief Ministers of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh not to proceed with the construction of projects which have not been cleared by the agencies concerned such as the Central Water Commission (CWC).

Jagan shot back. In a letter to Shekhawat, Jagan clarified that that the Rayalaseema project is being built with the objective of using the water that Andhra Pradesh receives in the summer as per the Reorganization Act.

Jagmohan Reddy in response to the letter by Union Minister, Shekhawat regarding the new projects taken in Andhra Pradesh, the Chief Minister informed that “no” new project is taken up by the state government, Andhra Pradesh is drawing only the share allocated to the state in Krishna Water Disputes 1 (KWDT). Krishna River Management Board (KRMB) is implementing the same.

The Apex Council meeting scheduled to be held on August 25 was postponed after
Shekhawat was tested positive for Covid-19.

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Telangana monsoon Assembly session from September 7

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The Monsoon Session of the Telangana Assembly will begin from September 7 under strict Covid-19 protocols.

The Assembly administration is taking all the precautions to prevent an outbreak in the Assembly. All the Ministers and MLAs will be allowed entry only after they undergo the Covid tests.

The bigger problem is the arrangement of seats in the Assembly. Currently, there are 76 seats in the House, each accommodating two members while Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao has an exclusive seating.

In the Covid-19 situation, the members have to mandatorily maintain physical distance which requires each member one seat. Minister of Roads & Buildings Legislative affairs has visited the Assembly to review the seating arrangements in the House.

Currently, there is a need to create 42 additional seats for members to occupy one each. In the unified Andhra Pradesh, the House could accommodate 294 seats. However, post bifurcation only 76 seats were kept to accommodate 151 members.

The Assembly session begins amidst the alarming rise of positive cases in Hyderabad. Several ministers and MLAs were tested positive for Covid-19 including Home Minister Mahamood Ali, Nizamabad Urban MLA B Ganesh Gupta, Nizambad Rural legislator Bajireddy Govardhan Reddy, Jangaon MLA Muthireddy Yadagir Reddy n tested positive for the infection.

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KCR holds ministerial meet on flood situation in Telangana

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Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao held a high-level meeting on Monday with ministers to review their preparedness to deal with south-west monsoon and current flood situation in the state.

The Chief Minister discussed disaster management in view of the heavy rainfall and meteorological predictions.

The meeting at Pragathi Bhavan comes at a time when state is reeling under incessant rainfall and flood situation for the last three days in most cities including Warangal

Chandrashekhar Rao sounded an alert as heavy rains triggered flood situation in some parts of the state and also directed the concerned officials to be on alert.

Several tanks and canals were overflowing due to the heavy rains lashing the state under the influence of a low pressure area off Bay of Bengal.

The Chief Minister has said there is threat of inundation due to overflowing tanks in Karimnagar. The flooding has affected around hundreds of houses in low-lying areas and thousands of people were evacuated.

The situation is no different in Warangal. Heavy to extremely heavy rainfall was recorded in Warangal city, Hanamkonda and Kazipet, that flooded several low-lying areas on Saturday. Hundreds of people have been evacuated and shifted to relief centres in Warangal city as well as in Narsampet town.

Hundreds of people living in low-lying areas in Greater Warangal Municipal Corporation (GWMC) limits were shifted to government rehabilitation centres on Sunday following a flood-like situation in the city.

The CM reviewed the prevailing situation and asked the Disaster Management Department to stay alert, especially for any rise in the river levels.

Rao also issued instructions for the evacuation of people from villages and their relocation to relief camps.

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