Blasts lay bare Azad-Shinde rift

Azad defends Kiran govt while Shinde alleged state inaction on intel alert

Published: 24th February 2013 08:31 AM  |   Last Updated: 24th February 2013 08:31 AM   |  A+A-

The twin bomb blasts that occurred at Dilsukhnagar here on Thursday appear to have brought the underlying differences between Union home minister Sushil Kumar Shinde and his cabinet colleague Ghulam Nabi Azad, who is also AICC state affairs incharge, to the fore.

This became clear when the two Union ministers aired different views on the response of the N Kiran Kumar Reddy’s government to the alert issued by central intelligence agencies on the possibility of terror attacks in Hyderabad.

A day after Shinde had blamed the state government for the twin explosions, saying various states are taking light of the intelligence alerts being issued by the Centre, Azad has thrown his weight behind Kiran government, saying that he did not find any fault with the state government for the blasts.

“The state government acted very well and responded well in time. Though the Centre issued a general alert to the state over terror attacks, unless the state gets specific information it would be very difficult to avert terror incidents. There is heavy traffic here (Hyderabad). The city is densely populated and congested. Unless you get a specific information that the attacks would occur at a particular place, it would be very difficult to avert them,” Azad said.

Before he was leaving for Delhi on Saturday morning, the AICC general secretary was talking to a regional TV channel here.

Stating that the state government was taking all necessary steps to relieve the pain of the tragedy-struck families, Azad said, “The state government has announced an ex gratia of Rs 6 lakh each to the families of the bereaved. It also announced the same amount to those who lost their limbs. Apart from giving financial aid to those who sustained moderate and minor injuries, the government has also provided them medical treatment at corporate hospitals.”

Azad’s statement, which differs with that of Shinde, assumed much political significance as both leaders are reportedly at loggerheads over the Telangana issue.

According to party sources, Shinde’s earlier statement of solving the issue within a timeframe of one month created a rift between him and Azad.

The AICC state affairs incharge is said to have disapproved of Shinde’s “self-initiative” to resolve the Telangana issue at the earliest.

When several Congress leaders from Seemandhra had met Azad a month ago to lobby against bifurcation, Azad came down heavily on Shinde for fixing the one-month timeframe.

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