It's wrong time for Jagan to settle scores with Chandrababu Naidu

ItChandrababu and Jagan Mohan Reddy
Highlights

The Andhra Pradesh government seems to have got entangled into avoidable faceoff with the Opposition parties....

The Andhra Pradesh government seems to have got entangled into avoidable faceoff with the Opposition parties. The party which came to power with thumping majority and had absolute support from all sections of people should have taken certain strategic measures to avoid unnecessary conflict and should have proved that they are the real saviours of democracy.

Any government should remember one thing that it is easy to convince people but sustaining the confidence of the people is very difficult. The TDP following the drubbing it received in the last elections would naturally be looking for some straw which could help them to bounce back.

It tried to sensationalise the issue of alleged attack on party sympathisers and create an atmosphere that all was not well in the State and the police were showing overenthusiasm.

The ruling party should have handled the situation in a defter manner. Being in power saying that they will take out counter rally to Atmakur and present those who were reportedly attacked by the TDP sympathisers in the past smacks of political immaturity and sends wrong signals.

Even if the TDP was in power, it would have also prevented any such rally on the grounds that peace would be affected and that there was a chance of group clashes. They too would have put all the leaders under house arrest. But then, there should be method in madness.

It was ridiculous that the police did not allow employees to enter Naidu's house. Even essentials like milk and breakfast for the employees were not allowed. Section 144 ofI CrPC authorises the Executive Magistrate of any State or territory to issue an order to prohibit the assembly of four or more people in an area.

According to the law, every member of such 'unlawful assembly' can be booked for engaging in rioting. Section 144 has been used in the past to impose restrictions as a means to prevent protests that can lead to unrest or riots. The orders to impose Section 144 have been conferred to Executive Magistrate when there is an emergency situation.

But in Wednesday incident, the police did not notify that the Section 144 was in vogue in front of the house of the leader of the Opposition. When questioned about their presence in large numbers in front of the main gate of the house of Naidu, brushing aside objections from the Chief Security Officer, preventing milk and breakfast from going into Naidu's house for the employees working there and not allowing employees to enter the house of Naidu, barging into hotel rooms where the TDP leaders were staying and preventing them even to go to restaurant are nothing but overenthusiasm on the part of the police.

What was worse was arresting common people who were going to attend a marriage suspecting them to be TDP activists though had a wedding invitation with them. In Hyderabad, when Prof Kodandaram and others wanted to go to visit Kaleshwaram project works alleging large scale irregularities, they too were put under house arrest, but the police never locked their gates. But the police at Naidu's house tied ropes to the main gate to prevent the Opposition leader from coming out his house.

Governments may come and go but men in uniform should always call a spade a spade. They should have also clearly notified on Tuesday about the areas where Section 144 was being clamped for the benefit of the common man so that they are not put to inconvenience to travel by road. If the situation was handled carefully, the high drama that was witnessed since morning could have been avoided.

The ruling party should at least now focus seriously on good governance which it had promised and see that the advantage it had gained is not lost. The ruling party is already under attack from the BJP which is making all out efforts to make inroads into the political vacuum in the State.

It has started making noise about shortage of sand in the State in spite of the new policy. It is also claiming that the YSRCP has been resorting to vindictive politics and was attacking their party cadre. They have started lodging complaints with the Governor against various decisions of the government.

The government's decision to go in for reverse tendering and cancellation of PPAs is brewing into a political storm with the Centre taking a serious view of the situation. This calls for more intelligent moves and Interest of the State and people should be given importance. Political scores can be settled later.

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