TDP National President and former Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu on Tuesday vowed to continue his party struggle till the government announced a special package for the Coronavirus-affected families along the lines of financial assistance being given in Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka and other States.
Naidu urged the Jaganmohan Reddy regime to set aside its narrow political agenda and start purchasing vaccines to inoculate people of all age groups. The rate of the vaccinated population should be increased from the present 23.2 per cent to at least 70 per cent in AP, he said.
Chandrababu Naidu took part in a State-wide ‘Sadhana Deeksha’ protest programme held in the TDP Central Office in Amaravati today. Party leaders and activists participated in the protest in all the 175 Assembly constituencies and 25 parliamentary segments in the State. They displayed placards and raised slogans demanding the government to come to the rescue of the crores of poor families suffering due to the pandemic.
In his valedictory address, Naidu demanded the Jagan Reddy regime to immediately announce Rs 10,000 financial assistance for all the white ration-card holders. This was necessary on account of the pathetic conditions of the poor families in the face of Covid losses in addition to price rise. The loss of work opportunities was a severe rude shock for them during the pandemic. Also, Rs 7,500 monthly assistance should be given to private teachers, auto-rickshaw drivers, workers of construction and unorganised sectors. This financial help should be continued till the government could create alternative work opportunities.
Naidu asked why AP became the only State that did not give a special package at a time when all other States extended some assistance or other to rescue their people. Maharashtra gave Rs 5,476 crore package, Tamil Nadu Rs 4,155 crore, Karnataka Rs 1,250 crore and Kerala Rs 20,000 crore.
Maharashtra gave Rs 2,500 to small traders and Rs 2,000 to tribals. Tamil Nadu gave Rs 4,000 to all ration card holders besides Rs 2,000 worth of essential commodities. Kerala, Orissa, Punjab, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and all other States gave support during Covid time.
Naidu deplored that since coming to power, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Jaganmohan Reddy made it a habit to make fake statements only to betray the people but not rescue them from a huge calamity like Coronavirus. “Without losing further time, the AP CM should initiate steps to create confidence among the people. The families whose members succumbed to Covid should be paid Rs. 10 lakh ex gratia,” he urged.
The TDP chief demanded that Rs 25 lakh ex gratia should be paid to the families whose members died due to lack of timely oxygen supply. All these deaths should be considered government murders. More than 30 patients died in Tirupati Ruia Hospital even though the government could bring oxygen from neighbouring Chennai within time. The inefficient YCP regime was the reason for the officials not taking proper steps to save the lives of the people, he said.
Naidu asked why the YCP government was causing an inordinate delay in paying arrears to the paddy farmers. The payments were made within 24 hours during the TDP regime. The government promised to give Rs 2,000 to all those Covid-affected families but payments were not being made at the field level. The Centre announced Rs 50 lakh ex gratia for the deaths of front line warriors. The AP government should extend this to the doctors, nurses, police, sanitation staff, ANMs and journalists, he urged.
Decrying the YCP rulers’ negligence, Naidu demanded the government to explain why the AP vaccination rate was very low at 23.2 per cent as against 30.3 per cent in Kerala, 28.2 per cent in Karnataka and 29 per cent in Gujarat. While all other States were purchasing vaccines to save the lives of their people, the Jagan regime in AP was making wrong claims. He said, shamelessly, the YCP regime stored over 13 lakh vaccine doses sent by the Centre and gave them on a single day only to claim India No 1 record. But still, AP was lagging far behind other States in the rate of vaccination.
Naidu strongly objected to how the Jaganmohan Reddy rule was trying to divert the attention of the people in the name of the Disha App downloads. The Chief Minister was creating such fake occasions only to hand over hundreds of crores to his media by giving advertisements. Under the Jagan regime, the AP people lost their jobs and assets, industries and investments going away, while only the CM’s own family companies were benefitting from money laundering, he claimed.