VIJAYAWADA/VISAKHAPATNAM: The annual three-day event of the Telugu Desam Party — Mahanadu — will begin at Visakhapatnam on Saturday amidst talk of early polls in alliance with the BJP. Having obtained a promise that the BJP would stand by him from party chief Amit Shah in his one-on-one on Thursday, Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu is now in an upbeat mood.
Naidu utilised the occasion to seek from Shah action for increasing the number of assembly constituencies from 175 to 225 as he had to accommodate quite a number of leaders who had defected to the Telugu Desam Party from YSRC. Now that the clouds of uncertainty have cleared to some extent on the future of the alliance with the BJP, the party is now getting back to business preparing for the elections.
Naidu needs continuance of the alliance since most of the promises made for AP in the State Reorganisation Act have not yet been fulfilled. If he is friends with the BJP, it would become easy for him to leverage on it in seeking early clearance for projects and funds for the state.
Already, the party machinery is in election mode as hardly two years are left for facing the polls. The party workers have been sensitised to move forward consolidating the gains that have already been made by the state government with its initiatives in various sectors. They are being asked to fan out into the villages and explain to the people the commitment with which Chandrababu Naidu is working in completing the first phase of the Polavaram project and Amaravati.
For the first time, the Telugu Desam Party is holding two Mahanadus - one each in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. The one in Telangana was over on May 24 while the one for AP, the main event, will begin on Saturday. The second day of Mahanadu coincides with the birth anniversary of party founder late NT Rama Rao on May 28.
Plea dismissed against TDP’s event at AU
In a relief to the Telugu Desam, the High Court on Friday dismissed the plea of a research scholar from Andhra University seeking direction to the university authorities not to permit the TDP to hold a three-day party meeting, Mahanadu, on the AU premises in Visakhapatnam from May 27 to 29.
Vacation judge Justice A Shankar Narayana dismissed the miscellaneous petition filed by R Janaki Rao, a research scholar of AU, with a request for preventing the TDP from holding its ‘Mahanadu’ on the university premises.
Petitioner’s counsel P Sudhakar Reddy cited a circular issued by the AP State Council for Higher Education in 2015 that banned all political meetings within the campuses of all the universities in the state. The decision of the authorities to permit the TDP to hold its meeting in the AU campus is contrary to the provisions of the AP Council for Higher Education Act, 1988, he said. The judge said the matter would be decided in the final hearing.