News in Times of India
Naidu playing cheap politics: CM
Peeved over the criticism made by opposition leader N Chandrababu Naidu that the chief minister had insulted the founders of the state by claiming to be the eldest son of Telugu Talli, chief minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy on Sunday retorted by demanding an apology from Naidu for indulging in “cheap politics,” even on an occasion like state formation day.
Talking to party men at his camp office on Sunday, Reddy reportedly remarked that instead of expressing his happiness over Telugu language getting the status of being a classical language, Naidu was trying to politicise the issue by levelling baseless allegations against him. “There is time and occasion for criticism. One should not loose his balance,” Reddy remarked.
Touching upon the criticism of TDP that the government had wasted Rs 16 crore on advertisements on a single day and had given highest advertisement revenue to the newspaper run by his son, the chief minister said Naidu should recall how much public money his government had wasted in “useless schemes,” like Janmabhoomi and the money that was spent in propaganda of schemes which did not yield any result. He should also explain the huge amount that was spent to prepare vision 2020. He said TDP government had hired foreign consultants for the purpose and they were paid huge remuneration ignoring the intellectuals within the state who could have done better job and come out with practical suggestions at lesser expenditure.
On the contrary, his government had been very prudent in fiscal management and also extended all possible benefits to the common man whether it be free power or higher pensions for old and widows, three percent interest loans to various sections etc.
News in Deccan Chronicle
It’s all politics says CM
The state government firmly believes that the ongoing teachers’ strike is “politically motivated” as it is unions affiliated to Left Parties that are in the frontline. The Chief Minister, Dr Y.S. Rajasekhar Reddy, said that his government had concrete information that opposition parties had spurred the ongoing strike to embarrass the government. “It has become a fashion for them to support all agitations by the organised sector without verifying the genuineness and feasibility of their demands,” said Dr Reddy.
When the government provided interim relief to the teachers recently by taking up a financial burden of Rs 583 crore, they had promised not to resort to agitations involving financial commitments till April 2009, he said. “This agreement was arrived in my presence but after that they started an agitation without caring about the promise given to me,” he said. Of the 22 teacher unions representing 2.5 lakh teachers in the Joint Action Committee of Teachers Organisations, majority are affiliated to the left parties.
The Minister for School Education, Mr Damodar Rajanarasimha, pointed out that other demands of the teachers such as unified service rules were pending with Supreme Court and there was little the government can do about it. “We are seriously pursuing the issue of unified service rules simultaneously with the Centre and the Supreme Court,” he said. “As it involves procedures, it will take some time.”
Governor to tour Europe
The Chief Minister, Dr Y.S. Rajasekhar Reddy, made a customary visit to the Governor Mr N.D. Tiwari, at Raj Bhavan here on Sunday. The Governor is leaving city on Monday on a 15-day foreign tour of the European countries.
The Governor will study the function of different universities and technical institutions in those countries. Besides four members of Governor’s personal staff, vice chancellors of Andhra and Osmania Universities, Mr D. Satyanarayana and Mr T. Tirupathi Rao will also accompany the Governor.
The Chief Minister, Dr Y.S. Rajasekhar Reddy on Sunday dismissed anti-incumbency fears and said that the Congress would win 230 seats in the 2009 Assembly elections. Speaking to the Pradesh Congress Committee executives at Gandhi Bhavan, the Chief Minister asked the party leaders to focus on their constituencies rather on other issues which needed the high command’s clearance.
In an oblique reference to the Telangana issue, he directed the party leaders not to talk on contentious issues on public forums, until a final decision is taken by the party high command. Dr Reddy asked the Pradesh Congress Committee executives to take stock of the situation and suggest a more effective system to reach the people within a short time.
Echoing the same message, the PCC president, Mr D. Srinivas, warned of serious consequences if party members spoke about Telangana and poll alliances out of the party office. “I have myself asked two times. Now I will not allow anybody to breach party discipline.” said Mr Srinivas. He said that the issue of poll alliances would be finalised only when the election dates are announced and as of now the state unit of Congress is not in a hurry to forge new alliances.
The finance minister, Mr K. Rosaiah, has taken over the campaign committee as convenor. Mr Rosaiah expressed confidence that people would vote for the government which has fulfilled all the promises it made in 2004. “All parties are joining hands only to defeat the Congress. They have neither an ideology nor values. Some of the parties are even embracing the BJP to win the elections.” criticised Mr Rosaiah.
The detailed election campaign plans and strategies would be decided later after discussing it with the Chief Minister and PCC president, he added. Taking objection to the statements made by the Telugu Desam chief, Mr N. Chadrababu Naidu, Mr Rosaiah asked why the former Chief Minister failed to get the classical language status to Telugu when he was in power.
The Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) has decided to extend its Kalyanamastu or mass marriage programme throughout the country.
The TTD chairman, Mr Adikeshavula Naidu, on Sunday said that the TTD was planning to implement the scheme in other states in a phased manner.
He said the Kalyanamastu programme was a great boon for the couples and their families who could not afford marriage expenses.
In Tirupati for example, a couple, got married after 40 years of liking each other. Nagaraju, 52, and Sarojamma, 48, both hailing from Nanjampeta in Sodum mandal in Chittoor district, was the centre of attraction at the colourful function.
According to the couple, they liked each other even as children. Nagaraju, who belongs to the Gandla community, and Sarojamma from the Eediga, suffered in silence unable to convince their parents. They were also unable to get married on their own.
Under the scheme, the couple is given golden mangalasutram, silver mettelu (toe rings), new clothes and a wedding feast for 60 relatives of each couple.
As many as 7,600 couples tied the knot on Sunday under the scheme all over the state. The Governor, Mr N.D. Tiwari, and the Chief Minister, Dr Y.S. Rajasekhar Reddy, blessed the couples at Lalita Kala Toranam where the mass marriages were performed.
The Kalyanamastu evoked a moderate response this time.
News in The Hindu
Chiranjeevi is a political novice: YSR
Praja Rajyam chief lacks understanding of key issues, says Chief Minister
Chief Minister Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy described Praja Rajyam president Chiranjeevi as a “political novice” who lacked a clear understanding of various issues.
Addressing the maiden meeting of the newly appointed Andhra Pradesh Congress Committee office bearers here at Gandhi Bhavan on Sunday, Dr. Reddy targeted the PR chief saying that he was ignorant of the ground realities and preferred to read a prepared text without doing an in-depth study of the issues.
Confident of victory
Dr. Reddy called upon the office bearers and other leaders to work in close coordination so that the party retained power without any difficulty. He exuded confidence that the Congress would win 235 seats. “No other political party can dream of coming to close to us,” he reportedly told the office-bearers.
TRS, Left flayed
He also reportedly criticised the TRS and the Left parties for their desperation to forge alliances with other parties. “It is unfortunate that these parties have given a go by to their ideologies. They only want to defeat the Congress and Rajasekhara Reddy,” he reportedly remarked.
APCC president D. Srinivas told reporters that party functionaries were told to publicise the government’s developmental and welfare programmes. “Rely on word of mouth campaign,” he said and added that though advertisements in television and newspapers were okay, they had a limited reach.
Finance Minister and APCC Campaign Committee chairman K.Rosaiah urged the leaders to highlight programmes like Arogyasri, which was being emulated by other States.
Later, Mr. Srinivas had separate interaction with the office bearers on allotment of organisational work. He is understood to have discussed issues such as appointment of district observers and inclusion of office bearers in the campaign and selection committees.
8,000 couples tie the knot at ‘Kalyanamastu’
Governor Tiwari, YSR among others bless the couples
Marriages were preformed in all 294 Assembly constituencies; free lunch provided
TTD authorities give mangalsutrams, silver toe-rings, new clothes to the bride and bridegrooms
As many as 8,000 couples entered into wedlock across the State during auspicious time between 10.55 am and 11.10 am on Sunday in the fourth phase of ‘Kalyanamastu’, the free mass marriage programme organised for the poor by the Tirumala Tirupathi Devasthanams.
In the State capital, Lalitha Kala Thoranam turned into a festive venue, as 125 couples, dressed in traditional attire, tied the knot amidst chanting of Vedic hymns and blessings by Governor N.D. Tiwari and Chief Minister Y.S. Rajsekhara Reddy.
Earlier, Finance Minister K. Rosaiah and TTD chairman D. K. Audikesavulu Naidu handed over the ‘mangalasutrams’ to the brides. Civil Supplies Minister Kasu Venkatakrishna Reddy, APCC president D. Srinivas, State BJP President Bandaru Dattatreya, K.V.P.Ramachandra Rao, MP, and High Court Judge N.V. Ramana were among those who attended the mass ceremony. The TTD Chairman said other States had shown interest to conduct mass marriages for the poor. The TTD would extend all cooperation. Describing the fourth phase as a great success, TTD Executive Officer K.V. Ramanachary, said there was tremendous response, as 8,000 applications were received. Mass marriages were preformed in all 294 Assembly constituencies. The maximum, 800 each, were conducted at Warangal and Khammam, followed by 675 ( Karimnagar) and 600 (Nalgonda). The TTD authorities gave the mangalsutrams, silver toe-rings and new clothes to the bride and bridegrooms and arranged for lunch for them and their relatives. The newlyweds and their family were also be given passes for free cellar darshan of Lord Venkateswara.
Mild commotion prevailed at in Karimnagar, when a woman tried to obstruct her sister’s marriage, alleging that the bride was abducted three months ago. She relented when officials explained that both were majors.
YSR seeks Rs. 100 crore for development of Telugu
The State government has decided to write to the Centre to enhance funds for the development of Telugu language.
Chief Minister Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy said that he would urge the Centre not to limit it to Rs. 100 crore but increase it.
Hailing the Centre’s decision to accord the classical language status he said it was a long cherished dream of the Telugus. In a statement issued here on Sunday, Dr. Reddy said the government would strive hard to popularise the language.
Taking a dig at Telugu Desam Party president N. Chandrababu Naidu’s remark that the Central Government’s decision was not the achievement of the Congress government, Dr. Reddy said some parties were unable to digest the honour bestowed to the State.
BCs will support YSR, says Krishnaiah
Andhra Pradesh State Backward Classes Welfare Association president R. Krishnaiah has made it clear that BCs in the State will support Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy in the ensuing elections and not Praja Rajyam Party leader Chiranjeevi. He has hinted at entering into active politics soon.
Speaking to reporters here on Sunday, he said that Dr. Reddy extended several benefits to BCs after he became the Chief Minister. They include fee reimbursement for students and filling of backlog posts. “Mr. Chiranjeevi launched his party recently. Both his advisors are non-BCs. None in his core committee is a BC. He may make tall promises like Telugu Desam president N. Chandrababu Naidu. How can we believe him. He should not expect any support from us,” said Mr. Krishnaiah.
He alleged that there was a plot to delete BCs from the reservation bill on SC/ST/BCs. When all the BCs in the country represented to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, he agreed to set up Nachappan committee on it and it gave recommendations to approve the bill in to to.