The Telangana Government is working on an novel project, under which ‘Bhavans’ will be set up for all the OBC castes near Hyderabad. These Bhavans will be used for holding events and functions of these communities. A total of 112 communities are listed in the OBC list of the Telangana government. The government has decided to allot a building to each of these communities. They will be named ‘Atma Gaurav Bhavans’.
The government has allotted 10 acres of land and Rs 10 crore for the project. At a recent meeting with state officials, chief minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao instructed that the project should be completed within a year.
The OBCs of Telangana are divided into 4-5 groups. The total number of castes listed is 112. Seven per cent posts are reserved for Group A, 10 per cent for Group B, one per cent for Group C, seven per cent for Group D and 4 per cent for Group E.
According to the state government, these ‘Atma Gaurav Bhavans’ will be developed as centres for cultural, social and educational activities. These centres will also be the hub for skill development programmes and showcase the cultural and social heritage of the respective communities. The state government has also proposed setting up of hostels at these centres.
The state government feels that a large chunk of the population hails from the OBCs and their financial condition is not sound. These centres will help them develop socially, culturally and educationally. Apart from Hyderabad, the state government has also identified land in Kokpet, Ghatkar, Medipali, Abdullapuram and Injapur for setting up such centres.
Chief minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao has said that this is a first-of-its-kind project in India to help the OBC join the mainstream of growth and development. This will aid in highlighting their talents in social, cultural and educational fields.
Social Welfare Minister of Telangana, Jogu Ramanna, told Forward Press that the initiative will involve all the OBC communities. Under the initiative, the Munnurukapu community of Group D has already been allocated Rs 5 crore as well as 5 acres of land by the government. Apart from this, the Dudukaala community has also been allocated Rs 3 crore and 3 acres of land while the Gangaputra and Vishwakarma communities will also be allocated land and funds. He said that as directed by the chief minister, the project will be completed within a year and work on it has already begun. The allocation of land is already underway and construction will begin soon.
It is worth noting that under this initiative, apart from the communities on the OBC list, the Yerukaalas (a Scheduled Tribe) and Budaga Jangams (a Scheduled Caste) have also been sanctioned their own Atma Gaurav Bhavans.
While the government claims that it is working for the social and financial upliftment of the OBCs, the question is whether the initiative to provide each community a Bhavan of its own will be in line with the objective of overall growth of the OBCs. This step is being considered by many as a a ploy to win the support of the OBCs.
Translation: Susmita Mukherjee; copy-editing: Amrish Herdenia