Stating that the economic order is the most dangerous system which shows its impact on every family, former Finance minister and TDP politburo member, Yanamala Ramakrishnudu, on Sunday dared Chief Minister, Jagan Mohan Reddy, to come for an open debate on the heavy debt burden on the State.
Ramakrishnudu said the Chief Minister and his Cabinet colleagues have been changing tack quite frequently on the future of Andhra Pradesh with regard to the liabilities of the State. “I am ready for an open debate with the Chief Minister in the presence of the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) officials on the borrowing of the State,” Ramakrishnudu said.
Expressing anguish at the distortion of the facts though as an experienced economist he has been narrating certain facts on the State’s economic condition, Ramakrishnudu said that even Constitutional authorities like the CAG is being misled by the government. “Is it not a fact that the CAG has openly stated that the details are not being submitted to it,” he asked.
The total debt burden on the State from 1956 till 2019 was Rs 2.53 lakh crore while Jagan, in these three-and-half-years inflated the level of burden to Rs 6.38 lakh cr, the former Finance minister pointed out. This apart, the dues to be paid to the employees as salaries and the bills to be cleared for the contractors amount to thousands of crores of rupees, he said.
This clearly indicates that by the time Jagan’s five-year term ends the total debts may cross even Rs 11 lakh cr, he said with much concern. Observing that the total debts during the TDP regime was Rs 1,63,981 cr of which major share was allotted to capital expenditure, Ramakrishnudu said during these three-and-half years, after the YSRCP came to power, the major share of debts was allotted to revenue expenditure.
The audit report of 2019-20 clearly mentioned that Rs 26,000 cr off-budget borrowings were not reflected in the budget, and in 2020-21 and 2021-22 too the off-budget borrowings were not presented even to the CAG thus burying the facts, Ramakrishnudu said. The former Finance minister demanded that the balance-sheets of the corporations be brought before the public domain and the Chief Minister come for an open debate to present the facts before the public.