Haritha Haram becomes "Haritha Haraam", is a big scam, waste of public money: Congress

Congress Treasurer Narayana Reddy rubbishes TRS Govt claims on plantation, demands Trees' Census

Hyderabad, July 20:

Launching a scathing attack on the claims of State Government pertaining to 'Haritha Haram' plantations across the state, Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC) Treasurer Guduru Narayan Reddy on Monday sought to know if Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao was ready to carry out the Tree Census in Telangana. 

Narayana Reddy, in a media statement on Monday, described the scheme as not 'Haritha Haram' but 'Haritha Haraam' and a major scam in which hundreds of crores of public money was being wasted. He said that if the government fails to prove its claim, it should submit its apology to the people. He said that if the State Government was claiming to have planted 159 crore trees across the Telangana State during the past five years as part of Haritha Harama program, it should ratify this by conducting Tree Census. 

The Congress leader said that it was revealed in an RTI query that Rs. 3,630 crore was spent in the name of planting the saplings from 2015 to 2020. He termed this entire exercise a scam and questioned the Rs 6.91 crore expenses incurred for purchasing Green Khandwas for the Haritha Haram alone. 

Narayana Reddy pointed out that the population of Telangana was nearly 3.52 crore as per 2011 census and 159 crore plants equal to 45 trees per person in the State. “If this is true, the State Government should justify its claim by conducting Tree Census in at least 5 or 10 percent of the 590 Mandals or 12,771 Gram Panchayats of the State which will come to nearly 1,275 villages or 59 Mandals of the State for Census," he said.

The Congress leader said that the State Government show at least 10 plants for each person in the villages of its choice and form a Task Force to conduct the Census. He said that there could be All-Party Committees in each village to carry out this census. 

Narayana Reddy appealed the people to come forward and question the government over this issue. He said that this could be the tip of the iceberg and many such scams could come out of the several ‘flagship’ programs of the TRS Government.