In a completely misogynist and repulsive personal attack, TDP MLC Buddha Venkanna insulted YSRCP MLA and actor Roja during a press meeting. Speaking to reporters, the TDP leader accused Roja of ‘hurting Telugu sentiments’ and alleged that she had acted in ‘blue films’. He further tried to paint her as an ‘immoral woman’ by claiming she consumed alcohol before press conferences.
Venkanna said that the Nagari legislator Roja had ‘no shame’. "She is talking in a way that is hurting women. She is abusing all of us from MLAs to MLCs and Ministers to Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu. YSRCP leader Jagan Reddy has let her loose on the town," Venkanna said.
"The youth are watching your 'Jabardhast' shows and blue films on the internet and getting spoiled. What about your blue films on the internet? You have acted in a way which hurts Telugu sentiments. Are you the one to talk? Do you have any shame?" he asked.
He told mediapersons that they should conduct a breathalyzer test on Roja and "they would see for themselves" during the next press meet.
Ironically, the TDP leader’s distasteful rant came a day after Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu gave a speech on protecting women in the state.
Politicking over Guntur rape
On May 2, a 9-year-old girl was raped in Guntur, and the incident led to protests in the district, with citizens demanding swift action. She was allegedly lured by her 50-year-old neighbour Subbaiah, who then raped her. Subbiah was found dead the next day, and is believed to have committed suicide.
While the survivor was in the hospital, CM Chandrababu Naidu visited her and later issued a warning to perpetrators. “If anyone indulges in such crimes, that would be their last day on earth. Such people don’t deserve to be in this state. People should fear that if they indulge in such crimes that they wouldn’t be alive.”
However, the Chief Minister and the TDP government came under criticism from the opposition. Participating in a candlelight rally and protest against the growing number of atrocities against women in the state, MLA Roja had said, "When such atrocities are carried out on little children, the Chief Minister should take responsibility, instead of simply blaming the YSRCP for everything."
"Yesterday itself, when the rape occurred, the TDP alleged that the accused was related to YSRCP leaders. It is shameful. A girl's life has been destroyed, and the TDP is playing politics on this," she said.
The TDP meanwhile accused Roja of personally insulting the Chief Minister.
Venkanna’s press meet on Monday was in this context, where he decided to launch a personal attack on Roja.
YSRCP hits back
Speaking to reporters in Hyderabad on Monday, YSRCP spokesperson N Padmaja said, "The TDP leadership has instigated the leaders tainted in 'call money sex racket' to criticize RK Roja after she raised her voice against what happened in Dachepalli and other such incidents."
"This shows the intolerance levels of TDP and the respect that they have towards women. The vulgar language speaks about their upbringing and attitude towards women. It is a deliberate bid to cover up the failures of TDP," she added.
The YSRCP leader also demanded that Naidu must suspend the TDP leaders who made personal remarks against Roja, to prove that he cares about women in his state.
"Though we could have hit back attacking the women in Naidu's family, we are refraining from doing so as we cannot stoop to such levels. The state has the dubious distinction of taking the second spot in the sexual assault on minors in the country and if no action is taken against these elected representatives, the matter will only deteriorate further," Padmaja said.