Tirupati bye-poll: YSRCP complains to ECI against TDP for ‘false propaganda’

The YSRCP has objected to TDP pamphlets which allege that the Jagan government has pawned special category status in exchange for acquittal in disproportionate assets cases.
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Jagan and Leader of Opposition Chandrababu Naidu
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Jagan and Leader of Opposition Chandrababu Naidu
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The YSR Congress Party has written to the Election Commission of India seeking action against the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) for allegedly distributing pamphlets making false allegations against the ruling YSRCP ahead of the Tirupati Lok Sabha bye-election. In a letter to the Chief Electoral Officer, state YSRCP general secretary Lella Appi Reddy took objection to the allegations made in the pamphlets, which were allegedly distributed in Tirupati as part of the TDP’s campaign for party candidate, former Union Minister Panabaka Lakshmi. 

The disputed pamphlet alleges that the YSRCP has pawned the special category status demand for Andhra Pradesh in exchange for relief from ‘cases’, referring to the disproportionate assets cases against Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy. The pamphlet, a copy of which has been appended to the complaint, also alleges that YSRCP MPs are silent about matters relating to the state’s rights in the Parliament. 

Appi Reddy alleged that the pamphlets were distributed on behalf of TDP candidate Panabaka Lakshmi, on the instructions of TDP chief Chandrababu Naidu. He termed the content of the pamphlet as “false propaganda” and said that it was “in violation of model code of conduct”. The TDP was casting aspersions not just on the state government but also the Union government and the judiciary, he wrote. As the cases against CM Jagan are pending before the courts and the matter is sub judice, the TDP should maintain restraint until the final verdict of the courts, he said in the letter.   

The letter also added that the YSRCP government has been repeatedly demanding the grant of special category status for Andhra Pradesh,  and termed the allegations as “highly objectionable” and “derogatory”. The YSRCP has sought action against the TDP candidate Panabaka Lakshmi, along with the TDP, for the distribution of pamphlets. 

Polling for the Tirupati Lok Sabha bye-election will be held on April 17. The ruling YSRCP has fielded M Gurumoorthy, the family physiotherapist for Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy and his kin, while the BJP-Jana Sena alliance has fielded retired bureaucrat and former Karnataka Chief Secretary Ratna Prabha from the constituency.

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