Naidu made to travel in bus, frisked at airport gates

Mobile photo of Nara Chandrababu Nadu undergoing frisking at the Gannavaram Airport on Friday.

Former chief minister of Andhra Pradesh and the leader of opposition Nara Chandrababu Naidu who enjoys Z Plus category was made to travel in bus to the terminal along with other passengers and was frisked like normal passengers at the Gannavaram Airport here on Friday night. The incident kicked up a row with the Telugu Desam Party alleging willful harassment of their leader by the YSR Congress government in the state.

Naidu was to take a flight to Hyderabad to meet his family who lives there. At the gates of the Airport, the security stopped the escort pilot vehicle which was supposed to take him to the aircraft.

Naidu was accorded the Z plus category after an assassination attempt by Maoists near Alipiri in Tirupati way back in 2003. Under this category he should get 24-hour protection by 23 armed security men and escort vehicles.

Objecting to the treatment meted out to their leader, former home minister Chinarajappa said that the YSRC government resorted to witch-hunt and is hell-bent on ill-treating their leader. “Naidu is a tall leader and compromising with his security could be disastrous. The YSRC government has also removed road clearance for our leader which could be dangerous,” he said. He demanded that the Union and state governments ensure proper security to Naidu.

“If Naidu refused to provide security to Jaganmohan Reddy he couldn’t have completed the 360-day Padayatra without a single incident,” said TDP MLA Vasupalli Ganesh Kumar who participated in a protest in Visakhapatnam on Saturday. The TDP leaders submitted a memorandum demanding appropriate security to Naidu.

The state government, however, has denied wrong-doings by the security officials. The police said that the road clearance of Naidu was in place, it wasn't removed. “As an opposition leader when he is travelling in a regular flight, he has to undergo frisking. If it was a special flight the entry would have been hassle-free,” a senior officer experienced in protocol issues said.

YSRCP MP Vijay Sai Reddy in a tweet cited the knife attack on their leader at the Visakhapatnam airport and said that Naidu must answer why security was so slack for an opposition leader. He said that the police have acted as per rules.

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