Telugu Desam Party (TDP) president and Leader of Opposition in Andhra Pradesh Assembly N. Chandrababu Naidu on Wednesday wrote to President, Prime Minister and Union Home Minister seeking President’s rule in the state citing what he called breakdown of constitutional machinery in the state.
The former chief minister also demanded a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) into Tuesday’s attacks on TDP offices and its leaders. He also sought protection by central police forces for the offices of the principal opposition party and key opposition leaders in the state.
Naidu sent letters to President Ram Nath Kovind, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah along with images, video clips and newspaper cuttings pertaining to Tuesday’s attack on TDP’s central office at Mangalagiri and other party offices and houses of party leaders.
He said state-wide attacks planned against TDP in a span of couple of hours are clear indications of pre-meditated and pre-planned attacks jointly orchestrated by the chief minister, chief minister’s office and the Director General of Police (DGP).
He called the attacks state-sponsored terror against people and political parties and alleged that the police colluded with attackers.
“This is not something unprecedented, it is actually the culmination of two-and-half years of intimidation and attacks by the ruling party in Andhra Pradesh on different sections of the society and democratic institutions, be it political parties, legislature, judiciary, bureaucracy and media,” wrote Naidu.
“If left unchecked, state-sponsored violence will only escalate further and spill across state borders, threatening national security. Thus, there is a complete failure of law and order along with the breakdown of constitutional machinery in Andhra Pradesh. This current situation of widespread lawlessness constitutes an apt case for the imposition of Article 356,” he added.
He said around 200 YSRCP goons attacked the TDP central office which is within a km from the office of the DGP. Never in the history of Indian democracy, did a ruling party henchmen attack the central office of the principal opposition party, he wrote.
Naidu alleged that the state-wide attacks were carried out with a view to curb the opposition with regard to drugs like heroin and cannabis. He also referred to seizure of 3,000 kilos of heroin at Mundra Port with the importing organisation being registered in Vijayawada.
In his six-page letter, Naidu gave a detailed sequence of events leading to the attack on party headquarters. The former chief minister claimed that he personally called DGP around 5.03 p.m but he responded only by saying that he is busy. Sensing danger, the staff of TDP office also called Mangalagiri police but in vain, he said
Naidu said ever since YSRCP came to power in 2019, there has been a concerted effort to thwart democracy by crushing dissent and filing false cases against the members of TDP. He also claimed that during the last two years, Andhra Pradesh has turned into a hub for criminal activities and emerged as an epicentre of drugs in general and cannabis. That drugs were being smuggled from Andhra Pradesh was corroborated by police of other states, especially Gujarat, Telangana, Karnataka and Uttar Pradesh.