Telangana govt to build pilgrim accommodation complexes in Sabarimala, Varanasi 

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Sabarimala | Photo: PTI

Hyderabad: The Telangana Cabinet on Thursday decided to construct building complexes in Sabarimala and Varanasi (Uttar Pradesh) and to provide accommodation for pilgrims from the state, and also to extend a grant of Rs 3 lakh for poor beneficiaries to build a house in their own lands.

Briefing reporters after a meeting of the state cabinet, Finance Minister T Harish Rao said the government decided to sanction Rs 25 crore each to build the accommodation facilities at Varanasi and Sabarimala (the abode of Lord Ayyappa in Kerala).

The decision has been taken to address the difficulties faced by devotees from Telangana in finding lodging in Varanasi and Sabarimala.

Talking about the housing scheme, named 'Gruha Lakshmi', he said the grant of Rs 3 lakh per house would be provided to four lakh beneficiaries who would like to build a house in their own site.

The Cabinet decided to begin the identification of beneficiaries under the scheme soon and also to quickly take up construction of houses, he said.

In another decision, the cabinet decided to extend the BRS government's flagship Dalit welfare scheme 'Dalit Bandhu' to 1.3 lakh beneficiaries. Each beneficiary gets a grant of Rs 10 lakh under the scheme.

Harish Rao, a nephew of Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao, said the Cabinet decided to distribute 'podu lands' (shifting cultivation) 'pattas' (titles) of four lakh acres of 'podu' (shifting cultivation) lands to 1,55,393 beneficiaries.

He said the government would instal a 125-ft statue of B R Ambedkar on April 14, the birth anniversary of India's first law minister, in Hyderabad.

The giant Ambedkar statue is one of the flagship projects of the BRS government.

The state Cabinet also decided to waive the loans to the tune of Rs 4,000 crore on houses for poor sanctioned during the previous Congress and TDP regimes, he added. PTI

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