NTR family feud comes to the fore

In rememberance: TDP President N Chandrababu Naidu with wife Bhuvaneswari and supporters pay tributes to N T Rama Rao on his 89th birth anniversary at NTR Ghat in Hyderabad on Satutrday. PTI

The gaping differences came to fore on Saturday during the second day of three-day TDP plenary “Mahanadu” at Gandipet on the outskirts of Hyderabad.

Nandamuri Harikrishna has been vociferous in protesting against the projection of Naidu’s Stanford trained 32-year-old son Lokesh as the latest “rising son” of Andhra Pradesh. The sprawling  convention hall  decked  in  yellow and red curtains and interiors also had room for some posters and flexi  cut outs of  “Chinnababu,” as Lokesh is popularly referred to in the inner circles of  the party and not that of NTR Junior. The banners and photos showing the party chief Chandrababu Naidu and Lokesh together have become the cynosure of all eyes.

Political observers opined that such an open campaign could not have been done without the tacit approval of the former chief minister of Andhra Pradesh.While Harikrishna refused to speak during the morning session, he was seen shouting at former speaker Yanamala Ramakrishnudu on why none of the publicity materials contained his or his son’s photo. “The party uses him (son) during elections but refrains from appreciating his efforts,” Harikrishna shouted. However, Naidu saw to it that Harikrishna cuts the cake commemorating the 80th birthday of the late NT Rama Rao.

But, Harikrishna left the venue in a huff leaving his younger brother and actor Balakrishna and brother-in-law Naidu on the dais. Meanwhile, Jr NTR who attended the NTR Ghat near state secretariat to pay floral tributes to his grandfather explained the reasons of abstaining from the yellow festival. “I have lots of pending work. I have to complete films in hand that is way I am not attending ‘Mahanadu,’ I will be there for the next ‘Mahanadu.’ ”

Balakrishna who is also the father-in-law of Lokesh, stayed back and played a perfect brother-in-law to Naidu. He not only praised Naidu as a true successor of NTR but also demanded “Bharata Ratna” for NTR.

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