Herald: Modi launches campaign in AP, T'gana; calls Naidu 'U-turn Babu'

Modi launches campaign in AP, T'gana; calls Naidu 'U-turn Babu'

30 Mar 2019 05:36am IST
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30 Mar 2019 05:36am IST

Alleges that K Chandrasekar Rao is under the influence of astrologers

PTI, KURNOOL /MAHBUBNAGAR: Kickstarting the BJP's poll campaign in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, Prime Minister Narendra Modi Friday targeted the opposition chief ministers of the two states, calling former ally N Chandrababu Naidu 'U-turn Babu' and alleging that K Chandrasekar Rao is under the influence of astrologers.

Andhra Pradesh with 25 seats and  Telangana with 17 figure in the first phase of the Lok Sabha polls starting April 11. Assembly polls will be also held simultaneously in AP where the Naidu-led TDP is in power.

Levelling charges of corruption and dynasty politics against Naidu, Modi said April 11 will usher in the "double engine" of AP's growth -- a BJP government both at the Centre and the state.

There was debate going on in AP that there were 'schemes for corruption,' ranging from the creation of the new capital Amravati, the prime minister charged.

"The people of Andhra Pradesh know whose coffers are being filled.. when this chowkidar sought accounts, u-turn Babu took a u-turn from AP's growth and walked out from NDA," Modi said addressing a rally in Kurnool.

Naidu had snapped ties with the NDA in March last year, accusing the Centre of not honouring the "promised" special category status to Andhra Pradesh.

Hitting out at the TDP supremo for getting close to the Congress, Modi said Naidu has "found friends who are on bail," apparently referring to Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi who are on bail in the National Herald case.

Modi, who had in the past hit out at Naidu for alleged family politics, said the election should also see the 'son set', and called for a new 'sun rise'.

He deliberately stressed on using 'son" to drive home his point on dynasty politics to target the chief minister and his son and state minister Nara Lokesh.

Alleging that Naidu's "intent" was not on state's development, Modi  sought to reject the chief minister's repeated attacks that his government neglected the state.

He accused Naidu of pasting state government 'stickers' on Central schemes.

"For sure, I could have done more work. I just required the cooperation of the state government. I made all efforts from my side, but the person who is running the government (Naidu), his intention is not Andhra Pradesh's development," Modi said.

Asking the people of Telangana to vote for a "new Bharat" where the people of the state will also benefit, Modi said the citizens in the country were moving forward sans any fear as the 'chowkidar' has been 'alert.'

Addressing a rally in Mahbubnagar, Modi took a swipe at the Telangana chief minister for the delay in forming the cabinet after securing a massive win last year, saying the latter must have been influenced by some astrologer.

K Chandrasekar Rao is said to be a firm believer in rituals and astrology.

Modi also described Rao as the "face" of dynastic and appeasement politics.

Targeting Rao, the prime minister alleged he took some decisions based on the advice of astrologers.

The swiftness Rao showed in advancing assembly polls ahead of its schedule was only matched by a long delay in formation of full-fledged Cabinet bringing governance in the state to a standstill, Modi said.

"The reason behind this may be some astrologer."

"You tell me whether the people of Telangana will decide the future of Telangana or an astrologer?" he asked.

Rao, who led his Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) to a decisive victory in the assembly polls in December, was sworn as chief minister along with one minister on December 13, but expanded the cabinet more than two months later on February 19.

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