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Saturday 18 January 2020

Jaganmohan admits some decisions controversial

Referring to the 75% local quota in industrial employment, the Andhra Pradesh chief minister said it was a 'pro-active and pro-industry' step

Amaravati: Admitting that his government has taken some “controversial decisions” in its first two months in power, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jaganmohan Reddy on Friday maintained that everything would enable a win-win situation.

“There is sincerity. This is reality. You have an honest government and a pro-active team. We are coming out with a win-win policy,” he said, referring to his government”s decision to re-negotiate power purchase agreements (signed with solar and wind energy generators) and a recent enactment, mandating reservation of 75% jobs in industries to local youths.

The chief minister addressed a ‘Diplomatic Outreach’ programme with envoys from about 30 countries to pitch Andhra Pradesh as a favourable destination for investments in different sectors. “We will stand as a role model in corruption-free governance and we have even enacted a law in this regard. Some of the decisions we have taken were controversial also. That lingers on,” Jagan noted, referring in particular to the review of PPAs.

Explaining the rationale, the chief minister said it was a “bold decision” to bring down power tariff for industries so as to attract more investment.

Referring to the 75% local quota in industrial employment, Jagan said it was a “pro-active and pro-industry” step. “Local youths obviously hope for getting jobs (in industries). If this is not addressed, theres going to be unrest. So it’s very important that the (youths) needs are met,” he added. The chief minister pointed out that even the US was talking about ‘local jobs’. “It’s prevailing all over the world,” he said.

The chief minister sought help from the envoys to secure investment into Andhra Pradesh in sectors like (oil) refineries, steel projects, airports, ports, water management and also interlinking of rivers.

The state was seeking to usher in a “green revolution” by scrapping all diesel-run buses and replacing them with electric.

Highlighting his government’s welfare agenda, Jaganmohan Reddy said the Navaratnalu programme was meant to enhance the living standards of people. “I am seeking your support for the welfare schemes, particularly related to higher education, modernization of schools and hospitals. Your countries could help us in this,” the chief minister said. “I don’t say we have everything on a platter. We are a poor state and theres no denying that. But we have many inherent strengths. Good relations with the Centre and the neighbouring states could add to our strength,” he remarked.

Finance Minister Buggana Rajendranath, Industries Minister Mekapati Goutham Reddy, Chief Secretary LV Subrahmanyam and other officials spoke.

Industries and Infrastructure Principal Secretary Rajat Bhargava made a presentation on the investment and industrial development scenario in the state.

YS Jaganmohan Reddy had a one-on-one interaction with the Ambassadors of South Korea, Singapore, Austria, Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, Myanmar, High Commissioners of Botswana and Sri Lanka, Deputy High Commissioner of UK and Consuls-General of Denmark, Indonesia and Australia.

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