Naidu returns from Europe to a party in dire straits

Former Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh and Telugu Desam Party national president Nara Chandrababu Naidu. (File photo).

Former Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh and Telugu Desam Party national president Nara Chandrababu Naidu returned to Shamshabad Airport here from a week-long trip to Europe with his family. As he gears up to leave for Amaravati on Wednesday, on the same day, the YSRCP government plans to start demolishing the “Praja Vedika” convention hall built by Naidu’s government to meet the general public and conduct government programmes.

Even as Naidu spoke with party seniors through video conference facility and advised them to stand their ground, he will be holding a series of meetings from his Undavalli Bungalow from Wednesday to chalk out a strategy to save the party from the poaching of the BJP in Telangana and also in Andhra Pradesh. However, the bungalow in which Naidu is staying is also earmarked for demolition.

The Chief Minister YS Jaganmohan Reddy on Tuesday made it clear that the demolition of unauthorised buildings on the riverfront will begin from Praja Vedika which was built at a cost of Rs 1 Crore to help the Chief Minister meet the general public and attend government programmes.

“There is nothing wrong if the government starts its demolition drive from Praja Vedika. But if it stops with that then its nothing but political vendetta,” Pawan Kalyan of Janasena observed in Amaravati.

While the fight for Praja Vedika is only symbolic, the real trouble for the party is the stream of leaders who are eager to join the BJP in both the Telugu states. It is said that Naidu has asked the Kapu leaders who held a separate meeting in Kakinada on the future course of action in his absence. He had advised them to wait until he returned from his trip. But the chief knows that the flood gates can't keep the herd together for long. With the jumping of four MPs to BJP, the general mood in the state is that the BJP will replace the TDP and it is not politically correct to stay in a sinking ship like the TDP.

The Naidu family is also facing new predicaments with regard to personal security with the Jagan government deciding to cut down security for Naidu and Lokesh. While Lokesh was given a two plus two cover, the security cover from other members of the family has been completely removed. The TDP cadre has objected to the sudden withdrawal of security cover to Naidu’s family arguing that its is politically motivated.

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