11-07-201911-07-2019 12:33:43 IST
2019-07-11T07:03:43.595Z11-07-2019 2019-07-11T07:03:40.523Z - - 17-07-2019
The Andhra Pradesh State Assembly began its budget session on a stormy note on Thursday. Right from the Question Hour, members from both the ruling YSRCP and the opposition TDP traded charges over the issue of proposed diversion of Godavari river waters to Srisailam and Nagarjuna Sagar reservoirs. The move, which is still at a nascent stage, is a joint initiative by chief ministers of both Telangana and Andhra Pradesh, K Chandrasekhara Rao and Y S Jaganmohan Reddy.
In his intervention on the subject, AP Chief Minister Y S Jaganmohan Reddy stoutly defended the proposed plan, stating it is the need of the hour for the stabilization of the Krishna river ayacut. Jagan claimed that the proposal is beginning to move forward largely due to the ‘magnanimity shown by KCR’ to help both states mitigate the severe water crisis. In the process, he took a barb at Chandrababu Naidu and the TDP for their double standards on the most pressing issues. He criticized Naidu for remaining a mute spectator during the TDP rule when the height of Almatti dam was raised and Kaleswaram project was being constructed in Telangana.
Reacting sharply to this, Chandrababu Naidu said that hasty decisions on contentious issues could prove detrimental to the interests of Andhra Pradesh. In the same breath, he took a dig at Jagan, when he reminded the young chief minister on how he is no match to his ’40 years of experience in politics’. Even as this drew instant derisive laughs from the treasury benches, Naidu went on to say that instead of the current proposal on Godavari river water sharing, Andhra Pradesh could do better, giving water easily by gravity, by completing the Polavaram project.
This makes one wonder if Chandrababu Naidu is completely oblivious to what happened his own five-year tenure. He was clearly caught off-guard with his own Polavaram reference. The veteran leader doesn’t need to be reminded that it was his TDP government that ruled the state in the last five years. And as its chief minister, he failed to fulfill the promise of completing the Polavaram project in stipulated time. The shrewd supremo of the TDP doesn’t have to be reminded that the latest Godavari water diversion plan wouldn’t have been thought about, had the much-needed project been finished on time under his watch. It just gives the feeling that Chandrababu Naidu is taking a calculated gamble, opposing Jagan-KCR plan and thereby, the possible stabilization of the Krishna river ayacut.
There will be many more occasions in the future when the controversial decisions taken during the TDP rule will come under the spotlight. Every time that happens, Chandrababu Naidu and the TDP leaders will be expected to rebut and rebuff, based on sound logic. But Naidu merely harping on his ’40-years-industry’ refrain every now and then just to silence his opponents can severely backfire. Already, his party’s image is at its lowest, thanks to the many such bullying tactics used in the last five years.
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