Tension prevailed at Gannavaram Airport in Vijayawada on Wednesday as BJP workers tried to attack Telugu actor Sivaji, who has been criticising the party for denying Special Category Status to Andhra Pradesh.
Activists of BJP stopped and mobbed the actor, with some of them hurling abuses at him for his allegations against the party and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
There was heated argument between the two sides. Sivaji told them that he will continue to fight for Special Category Status to the state and that he is not afraid of anybody.
Police had to intervene and act as a shield to protect the actor from the BJP workers, who come to the airport to welcome new chief of BJP's state unit Kanna Lakshminarayana on his arrival from New Delhi. The actor, who had arrived from Hyderabad, was coming out of the airport when BJP workers stopped him.
Shivaji, who had joined BJP in 2014 but later left the party. He recently alleged that BJP is trying to take control of all states in south India under Operation Dravida'. He had even claimed that the party is spending Rs 4,800 crore under the operation in Andhra Pradesh.
In March this year, BJP MLA P Manikyala Rao met Andhra Pradesh Director General of Police (DGP) Mannam Malakondaiah, and submitted a representation requesting him to take action on the claims made by a Tollywood actor.
In a press release, Manikyala questioned the allegations by Sivaji, and demanded a thorough inquiry into the actor's claims.
The BJP legislator also demanded that if the allegations were true, the people behind the operation must be identified, and appropriate action must be taken.
While Sivaji didn't directly name the party, it was seemingly directed at the BJP. He also alleged that two local political parties, presumably the Jana Sena party and the YSRCP, were helping the national party.
“A year ago, Operation Dravida was explained to me. The target of that party is to bring the entire South India under its grip by 2019. As a citizen of the state, I felt duty-bound to share this since I will impact the future of the state. If you ask me how should I be trusted, I don’t have an answer. It’s up to you," Sivaji told reporters.
He also released a 20-minute video to the media, where he indirectly reminded people that he was part of the BJP at one time, even going on a fast in 2015 over the Centre's move of going back on its promise to grant Special Category Status (SCS) to the state.
In the video, Sivaji claimed that the new party led by one 'Kalyan ji' and the regional party will join hands and defeat the major local party in 2019, following which the national party will put its plan into action.
Sivaji claimed that the 'new party' chief would be offered the post of a Union Minister, while the head of the regional party would be sent to jail for existing cases that he is fighting in court, following which a Telugu leader from the national party would take charge.