Buggana rubbishes TDP allegations

Blames CFMS introduced during TDP rule for misconceptions

In a strong rebuttal, Finance Minister Buggana Rajendranath Reddy has made light of the allegations of Public Accounts Committee (PAC) Chairman Payyavula Keshav that large sums in excess of ₹41,000 crore remained unaccounted for, dismissing the allegations as “innocent comments”.

Seeking to turn the tables, he blamed the Comprehensive Financial Management System (CFMS) introduced during the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) rule in the State for the misconceptions. The Opposition party was expected to know the facts before they level any allegations, he said.

Addressing a press conference on Wednesday, the Finance Minister asserted that every rupee spent was accounted for. The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) merely asked for a clarification. Basically, it was about reconciliation. The government was submitting necessary reports. But, the PAC chairman was provoking unnecessary doubts over the State’s financial situation. It was only to defame the government. It was ridiculous that Mr. Keshav was demanding an audit by the CAG based on a letter by the CAG. Wonder, how can the PAC Chairman make such innocent comments, he felt.

Stating that Mr. Keshav should have asked the government if he had any doubts, Mr. Rajendranath wondered why the TDP leader preferred to write letters to the Governor or Delhi. “I don’t understand the logic behind it. If he were true, why is Yanamala Ramakrishnudu (former Finance minister) silent in this regard?” he asked.

The Minister said that one should remember that the TDP government appointed a private person as head of CFMS. Payments were nerve centre. How could a private person be head of that? Also, instead of developing its own software, the previous government spent ₹300 crore on SAP. Efforts were on to rectify the lapses in CMFS, he said.

‘Not wrong to borrow’

Mr. Rajendranath asserted that there was nothing wrong in availing loans. Every State did it. The government, with the borrowings, was continuing the welfare schemes, and clearing the dues in various schemes during the TDP rule. Despite this, the debt growth since 2019 had come down to 16%. The debt growth was 18.36% during 2014-19, he pointed out.

Visibly incensed with the comments on debts and borrowings, he aksed how could Andhra Pradesh go for borrowings in the name of neighbouring States?The Opposition was making hue and cry that ₹17,000 crore loan was additional. The fFact remains that ₹16,000 crore loan was availed during the TDP rule itself, he said.

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