Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu has spent Rs 11 crore from the state exchequer to fund his protest against Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi.
Chandrababu Naidu had organised ‘Dharma Porata Deeksha’ (a day-long protest for justice) to attack the Modi government for its “failure” to give special status to Andhra Pradesh on Monday at the national capital.
According to the reports, the Andhra Pradesh government has allocated such exorbitant fund to Chandrababu Naidu to organise a political event at Delhi. The documents show that two trains were hired by the Andhra Pradesh government to transport protestors from Srikakulam and Anantapur to Delhi. The Telugu Desam Party (TDP) government in Andhra Pradesh spent Rs 1.2 crore from the state exchequer to hire two special trains with 20 compartments each.
“Government of Andhra Pradesh has decided to hire two special trains with 20 compartments each from South Central Railways, Secunderabad, i.e., starting one (1) train from Ananthapuramu and another from Srikakulam to reach New Delhi by 10.02.2019 to transport interested Political parties, organisations, NGOs associations, etc.. to participate in one day Deeksha (Protest) at New Delhi on 11.02.2019 to be led by the chief minister,” stated the government release.
Apart from hiring trains, the funds were also used to provide accommodation and food facilities to the general public and VIPs and nearly1,100 rooms were booked by the government for the same. The Budget Release Order (BRO) released by the Andhra Pradesh government refers to a provision of Rs 8 crore for ‘other state functions’ and only Rs 2 crore for ‘Dharma Porata Deeksha’.
However, TDP has said that they have organised similar protests and meetings in 11 districts of the state. It said the meeting organised in New Delhi was similar to the ones organised elsewhere, and that it was not a “political function”.
During the protest, a huge controversy had erupted after derogatory posters which took a cheap slur at the humble origins of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi appeared at the venue. At the protest site, TDP party workers had resorted to putting up posters which read “Jiske Haath Mein Chai ka Jhoota cup Dena Tha, Uske Haath Mein Janata Ne Desh De Diya”, which meant that ‘the person who should have been given a used teacup, has been given the country by the people”.