03 Oct 2008 03:57:00 AM IST
HYDERABAD/KARIMNAGAR: Another debt-ridden powerloom worker hanged himself in Sircilla on Thursday taking the toll in the last two days to four. The government, which had been content to announce ex gratia to bereaved families till now, seems to have woken up to the gravity of the situation.
At a review meeting here, Chief Minister YS Rajasekhara Reddy stressed the need to take up steps in a ‘firefighting’ mode to stem the tide of death. He directed officials to take up a slew of measures, including conversion of 5,000 white cards into AAY cards so that the workers’ families could get 35 kg of rice instead of 20 per month, a door-todoor survey to compile the data of unemployed, immediate release of Rs two-crore to conduct training programmes and grant of over 1,300 more pensions from next month.
To generate employment, the Chief Minister wanted the industries department to invite multi-nationals and top garment manufacturers to set up units in Sircilla and provide special incentives for interested parties to increase traction.
In the same breath, he called for a meeting with Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams officials to explore the possibility of getting work orders for Sircilla weavers.
Stating that unemployment and illicit liquor were the main reasons for the spate of suicides in Sircilla, Rajasekhara Reddy instructed the excise commissioner to post a task force in the town to put an end to the sale and consumption of illicit liquor.
The task force will be in town for one year. Similarly, he directed the officials to open a de-addiction camp and ward in Sircilla hospital and suggested that the Health department fill up vacancies of doctors without further delay.
The Chief Minister said an officer of the rank of joint director will be appointed to coordinate with all the departments to implement all the decisions taken to bring relief to the weavers