news Tuesday, June 09, 2015 - 05:30
Two Telugu states appear heading for a showdown over cash-for-vote scandal with TDP on Monday lodging police complaints against Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao in Andhra Pradesh, a day after an audio tape of his Andhra Pradesh counterpart N. Chandrababu Naidu' purported telephonic conversation surfaced. Alleging that phones of Naidu are being tapped by Telangana government, the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) government decided to take up the issue with the central government and complain about the police attitude in Hyderabad, the common capital. There was palpable tension between the two states amid reports that Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) of Telangana plans to summon Naidu for questioning. The row overshadowed celebrations of TDP government's first year in power. Naidu and other leaders at a public meeting organised in Guntur on Monday to mark the occasion, targeted TRS and YSR Congress. E.S.L. Naraimhan, who is governor for both the states, will be leaving for Delhi on Tuesday brief the central government of the latest developments. Accusing the Telangana government of hatching a conspiracy to defame Naidu and terming it as an attack on people of Andhra Pradesh, the leaders of TDP lodged the complaints against Rao at dozens of police stations across the state. The development came a day after an audio tape of a purported telephonic conversation between Naidu and nominated Telangana legislator Elvis Stephenson was aired on some TV channels. TDP leaders lodged first information reports (FIRs) against Chandrasekhar Rao, officials of ACB and some TV channels. The complainants claimed that the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) government fabricated the audio tape aired by some TV channels to implicate Naidu in a false case. Cases under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) relating to criminal conspiracy and forgery were booked. TDP leaders and activists in different part of Andhra Pradesh took to the streets to protest against the TRS government. They raised slogans against KCR, as Chandrasekhar Rao is popularly called, and burnt his effigies. Denying that it is Naidu's voice, Andhra government vowed to fight it legally, constitutionally and politically. Telangana TDP legislator A. Revanth Reddy was arrested by the ACB on May 31 when he was offering Rs.50 lakh to Stephenson to make him vote for the TDP-BJP candidate in the elections to Telangana legislative council. The ACB, which laid a trap on a complaint by Stephenson, also arrested Revanth Reddy's aides Sebastian Harry and Uday Simha. For a third consecutive day on Monday, ACB questioned them about the complicity of other political leaders and source of money. Meanwhile, TRS government has termed FIRs against KCR a cheap tactic and said this will not help Naidu to escape from law. KCR's son and a state minister K. Tarakarama Rao said Naidu is trying to create friction between two states to shield his corrupt practices. KTR, as the minister is popularly known, said the Telangana government has nothing to do with the audio tape. He also dared Naidu to face a live lie-detector test. He was reacting to allegations he lured the legislators of TDP and other opposition parties to TRS with money. Naidu has called an emergency meeting of the Andhra Pradesh cabinet on Tuesday. The cabinet is likely to pass a resolution condemning phone-tapping and alleged attempts by TRS to "defame" Naidu and the state government. The resolution will be sent to the central government with a demand for a comprehensive probe into phone-tapping. The TDP, which is a partner in the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) central government, will urge it to ensure implementation of all sections of the Andhra Pradesh Bifurcation Act, especially those relating to common capital Hyderabad. In another development, YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) chief Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy decided to meet President Pranab Mukherjee in New Delhi on Tuesday to demand probe against Naidu. Jagan will also meet union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday, party sources said. YSRCP has demanded that Naidu resign as the chief minister on moral grounds. IANS