From day one, State Election Commissioner Justice Kanagaraj made whirlwind visit of AP. While he is making visits to AP from Tamil Nadu, the neighbouring state is constructing walls on borders to block AP people. TDP says right from start, SEC Kanagaraj sent out wrong message on election preparedness despite virus threat. That led to YSRCP leaders holding rallies and spreading infections. Now, Former Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu has written an open letter to the people of Andhra Pradesh, appealing to them to protect themselves by personally taking all possible preventive measures against the dangerous COVID threat. The +ve cases doubled in just a month’s time in AP while the ruling YSR Congress Party leadership was not taking either initiative or responsibility to strengthen the fight against the invisible enemy.
It was unimaginable that a COVID-like danger would threaten people. The AP situation deteriorated ever since State Election Commission gave a call for election preparedness despite nationwide lockdown in the midst of virus infections. Following this, the YSRCP leaders began holding rallies, crowd-based gatherings and door-delivery of benefits. Such open violations of lockdown coupled with the failure of official machinery led to the present non-stop rise in Coronavirus cases in the State.
Mr. Chandrababu Naidu expressed surprise that even in a time of extreme calamity, the YSRCP was still looking for political advantage instead of giving total focus to public health and safety. The ruling party was only concerned with painting its flag colours on government buildings rather than speeding up virus tests and treatments. The YSRCP leaders were solely focusing on local body elections instead of saving the people from the virus epidemic and the lockdown impact on the livelihoods. The +ve cases at AP Raj Bhavan and in ruling party MP’s family reflected the failure of the Government. It was alarming that six members including four doctors in the MP’s family tested positive while several persons contracted virus in Raj Bhavan. Many letters were sent to the Government but it had not given standard protection kits to doctors, paramedical staff, sanitation staff, police, journalists and other frontline workers.
Mr. Naidu said that negligence of ruling party leaders in AP had sent a wrong message which led to neighbouring states constructing walls on AP borders. Telangana was preventing Mahbubnagar people from going to virus-hit Kurnool while Tamil Nadu blocked inter-state highway to block people going there from Andhra Pradesh. All this was happening because of YSRCP misplaced attention to shift Capital City in a time of serious steps required for virus containment.
Stating that migrant workers were in a dire situation, Mr. Chandrababu Naidu deplored that construction workers, weavers, toddytappers, fishermen, auto drivers, artisans and others depending on small professions were facing severe hardships. Anna Canteens and Beema insurance would have given lot of confidence in these workers in these troubled times.
Mr. Naidu said that the real test to leadership would be a calamitous crisis like the present COVID threat but the ruling party leaders were not able to take up this challenge. Whereas, the TDP was continuing its social responsibility just as it took part in relief efforts in 2009 Krishna district floods and Uttarakhand flash floods though it was in opposition at that time also.