On 21 June, Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao inaugurated the Kaleshwaram irrigation project, built at a cost of Rs 80000 crore. A Government Order dated 21 August 2019 reveals that the gifts given to the VIPs as part of the felicitation cost a bomb – Rs 1.66 crore to be precise.
The VIPs included Telangana Governor ESL Narasimhan, Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis and Andhra Pradesh CM Jaganmohan Reddy and ministers from the two neighbouring states. They were presented fancy silver filigree items.
According to the GO Rt No. 2175, 180 kg of silver was used to make the different items which were delivered two months before the event, says Y Ashok, president of the Silver Filigree of Karimnagar.
“For the special VIPs, we made ten veenas and peacocks, each weighing 2 kg. Each piece takes about two months to make because the art work is very intricate,” Ashok told Filter Kaapi. Other smaller pieces which SIFKA delivered included Charminar and the Kakatiya era arch of Warangal, presumably to be gifted to other dignitaries.
SIFKA is a society in Karimnagar town that has 150 families dedicated to the craft of making these silver gift items. The treasury was ordered to release 50 per cent of the amount, that is Rs 83.43 lakh to SIFKA.