HYDERABAD: In the wake of viral videos where Praja Palana application forms were found to be mishandled, BRS working president and former IT Minister KT Rama Rao (KTR) has cautioned the public about not falling into the hands of cybercriminals.

Taking to X on Tuesday, KTR tweeted, “I’ve been watching and hearing from concerned citizens about numerous videos of Praja Palana applications being mishandled carelessly by certain private individuals. These application forms contain sensitive data of crores of Telangana citizens. I urge the State Government to take appropriate precautions to prevent this confidential data from falling into the hands of cybercriminals.”

“Dear Telangana brothers and sisters, don’t share OTP or any bank details if someone calls you offering to give pension or house or any of the six guarantees. Don’t unnecessarily lose money listening to the words of Deputy Chief Minister Bhatti Vikramarka. Irrespective of whether you voted for BRS or not, As someone who was part of drafting Cybercrime legislation- take my word seriously and don’t fall prey to Cybercriminals,” he added.

The Congress Government’s “Praja Palana” initiative faced scrutiny as another set of visuals of a youth carrying a carton box filled with “Abhaya Hastham” forms submitted by the public surfaced. This incident, caught on camera, brought attention to potential lapses in the handling of sensitive information. The incident from Qutbullapur highlighted another instance of data leaks related to the Abhaya Hastham applications. A youth identified as Lokesh was observed carrying application forms from a municipal office in Qutubullapur, Hyderabad on his two-wheeler. When questioned, Lokesh revealed that he had been instructed to enter data from these application forms at home.

These two incidents, portraying the irresponsible handling of ‘Abhaya Hastham’ forms, sparked doubts regarding the government’s commitment to effectively manage applications and fulfill its promises to the public. The lapses also raised significant concerns about potential data breaches compromising the privacy and security of Telangana residents.