The UPA government is striving for inclusive growth, caring for the welfare of poorer sections of the society, Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram said in Hyderabad on Saturday.
"We believe in growth. Growth is important. But we equally believe in inclusive growth. A growth process must take all the poor people along," he said.
The UPA government launched various schemes like the National Rural Employment Guarantee scheme (NREGS), the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) and the farmers' loan waiver scheme to help the poor, he said.
Chidambaram asked why the previous NDA government at the Centre and the TDP government in Andhra Pradesh did not introduce programmes like the NREGS, JNNURM and loan waiver.
The Finance Minister was addressing a function where the 'Rajiv Arogya Sri' health insurance scheme of the Andhra Pradesh government was launched for Hyderabad district by Chief Minister YS Rajasekhara Reddy.
The state has been given over Rs 9,000 crore in recent years for various programmes, a major allocation, and more funds would be sanctioned if need be, he said.
Reddy obtained more funds from the Centre by constantly pursuing the issue with the Centre and he deserved praise for his efforts, the Finance Minister said.
Union Urban Development Minister S Jaipal Reddy said the estimated cost of Hyderabad Metro rail project has been enhanced from Rs 9,696 crore to Rs 11,814 crore out of which the Centre would give Rs 2,362 crore as grant.
The number of coaches has also been increased from 219 to 327, Reddy said.
The Chief Minister said the health insurance scheme would benefit 1.8 crore families in the state.
Chidambaram inaugurated the second phase of the Krishna drinking water supply project to Hyderabad city at Sahebnagar near Hyderabad earlier in the day.
The project, taken up at a cost of Rs 1082 crore, would benefit about 75 lakh people of the city.