HYDERABAD:The Chandrababu Naidu government’s decision to press ahead with the Pattiseema Lift Irrigation project — allegedly at inflated cost — led to an acrimonious and indecent verbal duel between the ruling TDP and Opposition YSRC members in the AP State Assembly on Wednesday.
Both sides vied with each other in using ‘unparliamentary language’ much to the dismay of Speaker Kodela Siva Prasada Rao. Trouble began late in the morning session when YSRC chief Jagan sought time from the Speaker to speak on the controversial project, after Irrigation Minister Devineni Uma Maheswara Rao’s speech. A few TDP members intervened to lash out at Jagan. MLA Bonda Uma Maheswara Rao called him a ‘420’ leading to heated exchanges between the two sides.
Rao’s remarks on YSRC MLA Kodali Sri Venkateswara Rao alias Nani also added fuel to fire and prompted Jagan’s MLAs to rush into the well of the House despite pleas of the Speaker to calm down.
In the meantime, responding to Jagan’s taunt that TDP MLAs could learn English from him, government chief whip K Srinivasulu alleged, “How can anyone think of learning English from Jagan who had stolen Class X question papers when he was studying at Shivashivani School? He is praising his father, but his father, the late YSR and mother Vijayamma, had once asked the then minister Rosaiah to prevent Jagan from coming home from Bengaluru as they both couldn’t bear his torture”. Furious YSRC legislators demanded that the Speaker discipline the chief whip and allow Jagan to speak. After that, for some time, the House plunged into chaos. TDP’s Bonda Uma Maheswara Rao called YSRC legislator and veteran actress Roja ‘aunty’ and ‘Iron Leg’. “Both Roja and Nani are iron legs and Jagan is 420,” he said. A visibly angry Roja dared him to come into the well of the House if he was ‘man enough’ and made indecent gestures at Rao and Women’s Empowerment Minister Peethala Sujatha. Later, speaking to reporters outside the House, she asked Rao if he was still under the delusion of being young to call her ‘aunty’. Sujatha, who was taken aback, complained to the Speaker and demanded that she be suspended. Amidst the drama, Nani and Rao exchanged threats further heightening the tension. At one stage, both sides came close to fisticuffs. The Speaker, sensing the situation, adjourned the House.
Later in the evening, the TDP released footage of the unsavoury incidents. “It clearly shows how YSRC members made indecent gestures,” said the government chief whip. In response, Roja and her YSRC colleague Bhaskar Reddy demanded that an uncut video of the proceedings be released.
Bonda provokes, roja hits back
TDP’s Bonda Uma Maheswara Rao called YSRC legislator and actress Roja ‘aunty’ and ‘Iron Leg’. “Both Roja and Nani are iron legs and Jagan 420,” he said. A visibly angry Roja dared him to come into the well of the House if he was ‘man enough’ and made indecent gestures at Rao and Women’s Empowerment Minister Peethala Sujatha.