Kommineni Srinivasa Rao
Though elections in Andhra Pradesh got over nearly a month ago, the war of words between chief minister Chandrababu Naidu and prime minister Narendra Modi, does not appear to subside. The TDP has been continuing his tirades against PM Modi at every other opportunity.
One perplexing fact is the issue of the bifurcation of Bihar which Modi referred to. Whether he did it to criticize the Congress or to emphasize the point that three states had been painlessly divided during Vajpayee's time, is not clear. Perhaps he wanted to point out the hardship which followed the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh.
Modi said that thanks to the manner in which the Congress divided AP, the party has no face in the state. This was a needless reference by the Prime Minister which Chandrababu Naidu attempted to exploit.
The TDP supremo said that Modi had no right to talk about the division of AP and that the BJP had supported it all along. Further, Chandrababu alleged that if there was a rift between the two Telugu states today, it was on account of PM Modi.
Chandrababu Naidu made several such comments forgetting that for four years, the TDP and BJP who were close allies. It may be recalled that when Venkaiah Naidu, who was a union minister at that time came and praised him, Chandrababu Naidu got a resolution passed in the state assembly hailing PM Modi.
Things took a sour turn after four years and from then on, Chandrababu has been waging relentless attacks against PM Narendra Modi and the BJP. He claimed that he may be arrested by the time elections would be held. The TDP chief indulged in reckless loose talk filled with half-truths. Let us look at some of the recent statements he made.
- Are the Congress and BJP alone responsible for bifurcation of AP?
- Isn't the TDP equally responsible?
- Didn't Chandrababu write to the Centre seeking division of the state?
- Didn't TDP MPs from Telangana raise their voice for a separate state in the Parliament?
Chandrababu Naidu also indulged in double speak of claiming in Telangana that it was his letter that was responsible for creation of a separate state. While in Andhra he blamed the Congress for dividing the state.
Glossing over all these points in recent history,Chandrababu now places the blame at the BJP's door squarely. Is it true that AP and Telangana are at loggerheads today? In reality, people of both the states are quite happy. Wasn't it Chandrababu Naidu who drove the rumour campaign that Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao and AP Leader of Opposition YS Jagan Mohan Reddy got together? Didn't he attempt to forge an alliance with TRS during the Telangana elections? Did he not turn to Congress only after the TRS rejected his overtures? It is for this reason that Chandrababu criticizes KCR in very sharp terms.
Didn't Chandrababu Naidu go about preaching in 2014 that he was a senior leader who had the solution to all problems? Why is it that he is now trying to blame Modi and the others? For that matter even KCR is a political leader with over 35 years of experience. Together, they can easily thrash out any problems which the two states might have.
If they have not been able to do so, is it not failure on their part and is Chandrababu not responsible in substantial measure for the deterioration of ties between the two? Did the AP CM ever broach problems related to the state with the Centre in the four years that his party sailed with the BJP? He was obsessed with cases being foisted against YS Jagan and number of seats in AP Assembly getting increased.
Why did Chandrababu attempt to overthrow the Telangana government and why was he red-handed in the vote-for-note case? Didn't he have to rush away from Hyderabad to Amaravati overnight though it was supposed to be the joint capital for ten years? Ignoring all these aspects, Chandrababu criticizes PM Modi, KCR and others which is pointless.
The only reason he may be doing so is because he probably reckons that it would help him politically to be close to the Congress at this point. The TDP chief now gets into the refrain that PM Modi did nothing for AP. He should also state what it did so far and why he had praised the PM and the BJP to the skies.
If Chandrababu explains these points in some detail, he would have moral authority to criticize PM Modi. Otherwise it becomes a case of political mudslinging in which he would lose all credibility.