In what is being seen as a politically significant move, Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao is not likely to receive Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the latter’s visit to Hyderabad on Saturday.
The Chief Minister has nominated Animal Husbandry, Fisheries, Dairy Development and Cinematography Minister T. Srinivas Yadav to receive and see off the Prime Minister during his visit.
According to a communication from the Chief Minister’s office to the Principal Secretary, General Administration Department (Political), the Chief Minister has agreed to the proposal for nominating Srinivas Yadav to be the minister-in-waiting to receive and see off the Prime Minister on arrival and departure.
This may be the first time since he became Chief Minister in 2014 that KCR will not be receiving the Prime Minister on his visit to Hyderabad.
The last time Modi had visited Hyderabad was on November 28, 2020 when he went to Bharat Biotech, the pharma company that developed India’s first Covid-19 vaccine Covaxin. However, at that time the Chief Minister was informed by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) that he need not come to the airport to receive the PM.
The Telangana Chief Secretary, the DGP and a couple of other officials had received the Prime Minister. The visit had come amid the elections for the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) which saw a bitter war of words between BJP and TRS leaders.
Modi is visiting Hyderabad on Saturday to attend two programmes, both on the outskirts of the city. He will visit the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) campus in Patancheru to launch its 50th anniversary celebrations.
Later, he will dedicate to the nation the ‘Statue of Equality’ at a ceremony to be held at Ramanujacharya Ashram at Muchintal. The 216-feet tall statue commemorates the 11th century Bhakti Saint Sri Ramanujacharya.
The Chief Minister is also not likely to share a dais with the Prime Minister at the ashram. Dropping hints to this effect, he visited the asharam on Thursday to participate in Ramanuja Sahasrabdi Samaroh celebrations and went around the giant statue.
KCR’s move to not to receive the Prime Minister is significant in view of his scathing attack on the latter after presentation of Union Budget 2022-23 in Parliament on Monday.
The Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) chief went ballistic while lashing out at the Centre for ignoring all the demands of the state and termed the budget “golmal” and “useless”.
At the same news conference when KCR was asked whether he would receive the Prime Minister, he remarked “it’s automatic. It goes without saying”.
“Whenever the Prime Minister is there in any state, the Chief Minister goes and welcomes. It’s a routine thing. It’s a protocol requirement. Nothing special about it,” he had said.
KCR, however, was evasive when asked if he would be sharing the dais with the PM. The TRS leader had defended his attack on PM. “This is my policy. Even while sitting along with Mr Narendra Modi in his helicopter, I will say the same thing,” he said.
At his two-and-half hour long news conference, KCR had made a bitter attack on Modi, mocking his ‘Gujarat Model’ and the different outfits he chose for elections in different states.
The TRS chief has also announced that he would play a role in national politics to bring a qualitative change in the country as both Congress and BJP have failed to meet the aspirations of people.