Unfazed by the strong protest lodged by the IAS fraternity against his remarks that IAS officers should be shot dead on the road, minor irrigation minister TG Venkatesh on Sunday refused to apologise unless the officers who do not do their work properly accepted their fault in public.
Expressing his displeasure over the lackadaisical attitude of some IAS officers in solving the problems of the common man, he fired another salvo saying it is not the honesty of the officer but his work that matters and added that the entire system will collapse if the bureaucrats do not deliver.
“My remarks were aimed at officers who do not work. I spoke nothing wrong,” the minister maintained even as the IAS fraternity, which was expecting a “damage-control” statement from the minister were left fuming even more.
The minister also tried to justify his remarks. “What is wrong in saying like that. We are all human beings. We all get angry at one point of time. Even parents chide their lazy child by saying that he or she must be shot dead. I don’t see anything wrong with it,” he said.
He said that he had never intended to provoke people to kill anybody and added that his remark was aimed at bureaucrats and politicians, who were like two eyes of the government. Venkatesh was addressing the media at the residence of social welfare minister Pithani Satyanarayana here Sunday.
Sundya’s remarks by the minister also did not go down well with the IAS fraternity, who were expecting he would at least tone down his utterances. “This is like adding insult to injury,” said an officer.
Though a section of media speculated that the IAS Officers Association would take legal action against the minister, the bureaucrats categorically denied that any such move was being contemplated.
Meanwhile, chief minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy, while talking to scribes at Rampachodavaram, said he was not aware of the “killing remarks” made by T G Venkatesh. However, Kiran Reddy made it clear that politicians and officers were part of the government and all of them must work with cohesion and not to try for one-upmanship.
However, deputy chief minister Damodar Rajanarasimha said he did not agree with Venkatesh’s remarks, which were “personal and had nothing to do with the government.”