Actor-politician and Jana Sena chief Pawan Kalyan on Friday alleged that the residence of Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu in the state's upcoming capital of Amaravati, was built in violation of environment norms.
Lashing out at Naidu, Pawan Kalyan said that the CM's residence is one among many structures that were built on the Krishna riverbed and identified by authorities as violating ecological regulations.
Pawan was addressing a large gathering as part of his ongoing Porata Yatra in Vizianagaram district.
Asking his party workers to visit villages and work on the grass root level, Pawan also said, â€śThe Chief Minister has given priority to the development of the TDP family rather than the most backward areas like Uttarandhra and tribal areas.â€ť
â€śThe TDP government claims that it has laid 17,000-km roads in the State. Then why is the road in Salur in such a bad shape? The areas nearby Salur look so beautiful with water resources. But the government has failed to utilise them properly and improve irrigation and drinking water facilities to the people,â€ť the Jana Sena chief added.
The allegation that the chief minister's residence was built in violation of environmental norms first surfaced last year when former Andhra Pradesh Information Commissioner P Vijaya Babu slammed the state government.
Babu, who is also the founder of Better Andhra Pradesh (BAP), accused government officials of being aware of these encroachments, and asked them to respect the law and verdicts of the courts.
Speaking to reporters in Vijayawada, he had said at the time, "The CM himself got a building built against the River Conservancy Act as his official residence. The Act specifies that no structure should be built within 500 meters from the river course. On the river bank in Krishna district, there are 18 buildings and on the side of Guntur district there are 48 buildings.â€ť
In September last year, hearing a public interest litigation filed by YSRCP MLA Alla Ramakrishna Reddy, the Hyderabad High Court issued notices to the owners of several high-profile constructions, including Lingamaneni Estate, where Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu is residing, in Undavalli village of Guntur district.
The land and villa reportedly belongs to Lingamaneni Ramesh, chief of Air Costa, and Naidu is using it as his camp office-cum-residence.
Lokesh hits back
Earlier this week, the remarks made by Pawan did not go down well with Andhra Pradesh Municipal Administration and Urban Development (MAUD) Minister Nara Lokesh, who took to Twitter, to rebuke the claims.
"Dear Pawan Kalyan garu, kindly note your claim that AP government is not even spending Rs 10 crore in tribal regions is false. You are being misinformed by your team members. Since TDP took over, we have completed 21,48,312 works with a budget of Rs. 2476.32 crore," Lokesh said.
"The roads and bridges you are walking on, the clean water you are drinking, the delightful sight of coffee plantations, Anganwadi centres, farm ponds and every development you can see have been built with the generous allocations made by CM Naidu," he added.
"Kindly donâ€™t get carried away by the false information provided by your team and make needless accusations to score political brownie points. We will gladly accept your suggestions on improvement, but not lies packaged in empty rhetoric," he concluded.