For Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao, the inauguration of the new ultra-modern secretariat, named after BR Ambedkar, on the banks of Hussain Sagar Lake in Hyderabad is a dream come true.
After occupying his chambers on the sixth floor and signing six files, the first of which was the regularisation of the contract employees in the state — after its inauguration on Sunday, 30 April — the chief minister addressed a public meeting on the premises of the secretariat where he thanked everyone who made the new secretariat dream real.
A festive atmosphere pervaded the entire secretariat as the ministers, MLAs, MPs, other people’s representatives, officials, and employees were seen moving around discussing animatedly the breathtaking features of the new building which is being branded as a modern Indian marvel.
The chief minister, in reply to his detractors who picked holes in him for demolishing the old secretariat for the construction of the new one, defined what reconstruction meant and why demolition is sometimes better for ushering in an even better order.
Manifesting the vision to put in place state-of-the-art facilities for an effective administration. Watch live as CM Sri KCR inaugurates Dr. B.R. Ambedkar Telangana State Secretariat. https://t.co/X3npQjhTtV
— Telangana CMO (@TelanganaCMO) April 30, 2023
‘Beginning of reconstruction process
“There were some lilliputs who argued that I was destroying Telangana, without realising that it was the beginning of the process of reconstruction,” he said.
He recalled the days immediately after the formation of the Telangana state and how some people tried to belittle every measure that he had taken to take the state forward.
“They began burning with envy as we commenced the construction of the new secretariat that would stand as an eloquent testimony to Telangana pride. We have reclaimed the lakes and tanks. We began harnessing the waters of several perennial rivers and tributaries that flowed through Telangana,” KCR said.
“I used to drop coins in the mighty Godavari that coursed through Telangana, praying that one day it should irrigate Telangna’s parched lands. Now it has become real. We have Kaleshwaram Project, which covered the Telangana with a rich green blanket,” he added.
The chief minister said that there was no comparison between Telangana under Andhra Pradesh rulers and now, adding that in those days, farmers used to be awake throughout the night, not knowing when the power supply would resume.
“But now they return home by evening and go to bed early as they would have provided water to their crops during day time. This is what reconstruction means,” he said.
He said the villages have been through a radical transformation.
“Once labourers in the Mahabubnagar district used to migrate to other places. Now, reverse migration has begun. In fact, labourers from other states are arriving in Telangana for livelihood,” he said.
“Mission Bhagiratha has ended the drinking water problem in villages for good. Today, the quality of water supply to houses in posh Jubilee Hills in Hyderabad is the same as the water that is being supplied in a Gondu Gudem in the interior jungles of the Adilabad district,” he added.
The chief minister said that equal focus was laid on the development of towns.
“Once they used to be dungeons but not anymore. They have acquired the looks of modern cities with integrated markets and dump yards. In fact, Hyderabad is as good as any international city now with quite several flyovers, underpasses, link roads, and super speciality hospitals coming up in all directions of the city,” he said.
KCR said one heartening feature of good governance was the absence of any communal riots in Hyderabad or elsewhere in the state since the formation of the state.
“The past DGPs had worked hard and the present DGP is also putting in efforts to ensure communal harmony and thus prevent any scope for a breakdown of law and order. Telangana is one state where women could feel very secure as SHE teams are always there to protect them. The investment climate has improved so much that Telangana is attracting investments in lakhs of crores. In exports, Hyderabad was beating Bangalore,” he said.
Tribute to Ambedkar
Paying tributes to BR Ambedkar — whose world’s tallest statue was unveiled at a place very close to the new secretariat — the chief minister said that the architect of the Indian constitution would continue to be a source of inspiration and guidance to the Telangana government.
“The visionary that Ambedkar is, he had woken up the marginalised sections to fight for equal rights. If the Telangana movement remained non-violent, it was because it had its roots in the tenets that Ambedkar and Gandhiji had enunciated in their time,” said KCR.
The chief minister arrived at the secretariat at about 1.20 p.m. and joined R and B Minister Vemula Prashanth Reddy and his wife who were conducting Sudrashana Yagam at Yagashala in the secretariat.
He later unveiled the plaque for the secretariat as a mark of the inauguration of the new building.
The state government invested ₹610 crore for the construction of the secretariat.
It was built in an area of 28 acres and the midst of eight acres of greenery with features reflecting Telangana’s rich cultural history.
As many as 12,000 workers worked in three shifts and built the secretariat in 10.52 lakh square ft in a matter of two years and ninety days.