Viral News: The Telangana government’s Praja Palana program, which aims to implement the six guarantees of the Congress party, has come under fire for alleged data breaches and mishandling of application forms.
The program, which was conducted from December 28, 2023 to January 6, 2024, received over 1.25 crore applications from the public for various schemes and benefits. However, some videos and incidents have exposed the lack of proper data entry and security measures for the forms.
In one video, students were seen taking the forms to their homes for data entry, raising questions about the privacy and confidentiality of the applicants’ information. In another incident, about 500 filled-in forms fell out of a carton box being carried by a delivery person on his two-wheeler and scattered on the road in Balanagar. The forms belonged to the applicants from the Hayathnagar area.
The opposition party Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) has slammed the government for allowing such lapses and has claimed that there is a serious data threat.
BRS leader B. Krishank asked if the police were agreeing that 1.11 crore phone numbers of applications were leaked. He alleged that the applicants were also receiving calls on their mobile numbers asking them to share the OTP sent to their numbers.
The police have cautioned the people not to share their OTP with anyone who calls them claiming to be an official. They have clarified that no official will call anyone to share the OTP.
The state government has defended the program and has said that 30,000 data entry operators were engaged in the work. Chief Secretary A. Santhi Kumari has directed district collectors to complete the data entry by January 17.
The Praja Palana program is one of the flagship initiatives of the Congress government, which came to power in the 2023 elections. The program is meant to fulfill the six guarantees of the party, which include Rs.2500 for every woman, housing help, Rs.500-gas cylinder scheme, and up to 200 units free electricity, and more.
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