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Andhra Pradesh - Hyderabad Printer Friendly Page   Send this Article to a Friend

Patil hints at payment of pension to freedom fighters

By Our Special Correspondent

HYDERABAD, SEPT. 21. The Union Home Minister, Shivraj Patil, on Tuesday said the Centre was likely to take a "favourable decision" on payment of pension to freedom fighters who had participated in the Hyderabad Liberation Struggle.

Inaugurating the Ravi Narayana Reddy Memorial Auditorium Complex at Banjara Hills here, built by the Telangana Martyrs' Memorial Trust (TMMT), Mr. Patil said the matter was under process of completion. "What we will be doing is nothing compared to the freedom fighters' sacrifices and their sufferings," he noted.

The inaugural function was significant as both the Chief Minister, Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy, and the former Chief Minister, N. Chandrababu Naidu, attended, besides a large number of freedom fighters. K.L. Mahendra and A. Guruva Reddy, freedom fighters, unveiled the Telangana Martyrs Memorial and the TMMT office respectively.

Paying glowing tributes to Ravi Narayana Reddy, Mr. Patil recalled his stellar role in the freedom struggle, the Telangana armed struggle, as a social reformer and the way he gave away his 400 acres for the landless poor.

Delivering a lecture in memory of Narayana Reddy later, he spoke of the importance of good leadership and the contemporary challenges. "It has become complex with the conflicting demands. We have a situation where there are people barely managing to survive and those clamouring for international standard of living. We need to strike a balance. If the leadership abandons people's welfare, it amounts to negation of democracy leading to frustration among them and they could be hijacked by violent movements."

Deprivation of people

He said no Government could ignore the deprivation of people and ensuring freedom from poverty, hunger and exploitation. Good governance cannot be reduced to a mere slogan but as an urgent imperative. Delivery mechanism needs to be made responsive and accountable.

Rs. 70 crore cost likely

Dr. Rajasekhara Reddy said the sanction of pension to freedom fighters of the liberation struggle may cost Rs.70 crores every year but it was not high compared to the sacrifices made by them. He said the Union Home Minister took special interest and sent the proposal to Union Cabinet. He promised to install the statue of Narayan Reddy at a prominent place in Hyderabad.

Mr. Chandrababu Naidu said there was no parallel to the sacrifices made by Narayan Reddy and other freedom fighters during the liberation struggle. Over 4,500 people have lost their lives. It was to commemorate their sacrifices 2,000 square yards land was allotted to the TMMT for building the auditorium complex.

Ch. Rajeswara Rao, secretary of the TMMT, spoke. Raj Bahadur Gour, president of the TMMT, attended. S. Sudhakar Reddy, MP and State CPI secretary, welcomed.

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