NGOs acting at Lagadapati’s behest?

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The NGOs are comfortable in the presence of the Congress and the YSR Congress Party leaders, but not with ...

The NGOs are comfortable in the presence of the Congress and the YSR Congress Party leaders, but not with the TD leaders

D Gopi

Vijayawada: Accusing fingers are being pointed at the APNGO leaders for their attitude in allowing politicians in Samaikyandhra agitation. The leaders are accused of working at the directions of the local MP, Lagadapati Rajagopal. The criticism gets stronger with the NGO leaders allowing the two Congress former mayors, MV Rathna Bindu and Mallika Begum, another former mayor Tadi Sakunthala, a YSR Congress leader, at the September 13 ‘Mahila Garjana’ held on the sprawling Swaraj Maidan grounds.

While allowing the former three women mayors, the NGOs have left out another woman former mayor, Panchumarthi Anuradha, a directly elected mayor belonging to Telugu Desam Party.

There are a handful of Congress leaders taking part in the Samaikyandhra agitation along with the NGOs and other government employees. The NGOs feel comfortable in the presence of the Congress and the YSR Congress Party leaders in the agitations, but are not allowing the TD leaders. In fact, TD district unit chief and Mylavaram legislator Devineni Umamaheswara Rao was sent back at Ibrahimpatnam last month, when he visited the ‘Vanta Vaarpu’ programme. Besides the TD leaders, it is alleged that the NGO leaders are uncomfortable with the rivals of Lagadapati, including the Krishna political JAC convener, Kolanukonda Sivaji. Interestingly, Sivaji, who played his part as political JAC convener after December 2009 and now, is not being allowed for the Samaikyandhra meetings.

In addition to these leaders, an advocate, Naraharisetti Srihari, was invited for the NGOs meeting at Hyderabad. Srihari, a loyalist of Lagadapati, is also the brother of the Krishna District Congress Committee president, Naraharisetti Narasimha Rao. His presence at the ‘Save Andhra Pradesh’ meeting in Hyderabad lends credence to the argument that the NGOs are directed by the office of Lagadapati.

Another special attraction at the ‘Save AP’ meeting was Gazal Srinivas, who is credited as the pet boy of Lagadapati. The NGOs have given him greater importance while not bothering about Vangapandu Prasada Rao, who waited outside the L B Stadium, which also is a point raised by the critics.

Another point in focus is the presence of Student JAC convener, Devineni Avinash, the youth Congress leader, while denying the presence of his sibling and the city Telugu Yuvatha president, Devineni Chandrasekhar at the NGOs protests and meetings. Though Avinash gets the credit of being the first to organise protests even before the NGOs launched the strike and deserves right place for his contribution, the NGOs are in his favour keeping Chandrasekhar at a distance, substantiating the charge that the NGOs are working at the whims and fancies of the local MP. It is to be seen how the NGOs would face this criticism and come out or continue to patronize the pro-Lagadapati loyalists.

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