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Naidu seeks `good offices` of Jayalalithaa to settle Telengana issue

PTI | Last Updated: Thursday, February 6, 2014 - 15:22

Chennai: TDP leader Chandrababu Naidu on Thursday met Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa on the issue of bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh, seeking her "good offices" to settle the issue amicably while accusing Congress of playing "dirty politics" on this matter.

"TDP is very clear from the beginning. There is a sentiment in Telangana. And at the same time, you have to do the bifurcation in a judicious way with the consent of everybody," he told reporters after holding discussions with Jayalalithaa at her Poes Garden residence for over half an hour.

"There should be consensus on the matter and we have to do justice to both regions and then only we have to do that (bifurcation)," he said.
With the issue gaining national momentum with anti-Telangana leaders, including Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy staging protests in Delhi, Naidu said the matter has become a "national crisis".

Asked about his stand in the context of the issue becoming a national crisis, he merely said he was very clear that Congress was playing "all dirty politics".

"They are responsible for this. They don`t have any value, any morals. At least now, President of India (should) call both the regions and ask them to sit together, discuss, debate and solve the problem amicably," he said.

Asked if he was for bifurcation of his state, Naidu said that states were divided following proper procedures.

"States were divided following due procedures and after convincing everybody and this was the case with Chennai also," he said in an apparent reference to the creation of Andhra Pradesh from Tamil Nadu, based on linguistic lines.

"There is a procedure. Otherwise nobody can do. For political gain, for seats and votes, you cannot destroy the community. You cannot play with the lives of people. That is what I am saying," he said.
Holding that the UPA government had done nothing on this matter in the last 10 years, Naidu said the issue had been taken up now as elections were approaching.

"This is the last budget. It is vote on account and railway budget. Is it right to take any policy (decision)? It is only a publicity. What is the legitimacy you are having? You don`t have (any) right. You don`t have legal sanctity. In another 15-20 days, elections are going to be notified," he said.

Naidu alleged that the bifurcation was being done by the Congress to get votes.
The country was aware of Congress` intentions and "at the end of the day, it is going to pay a heavy price for all these things," he said, adding he was doing his job as a "responsible citizen”.

Asked about Jayalalithaa`s response to the issue, he said she was very clear that "we want justice for both areas."

"She is also very clear that this is correct. They cannot violate federalism and at the same time they cannot misuse their power," he said.

The TDP leader said he wanted to explain to Jayalalithaa "what is happening in this country," apparently in the context of the Telangana turmoil and said "Congress for political gains is playing all dirty politics."

TDP and AIADMK have for long enjoyed a cordial relationship with the founders of the respective parties, NT Rama Rao and MG Ramachandran being "very close friends," Naidu said, adding "apart from that politically also we are close."

He refused to comment on the emergence of a Third Front, saying he was `tied up` with the Telangana issue, adding he would discuss politics later.

First Published: Thursday, February 6, 2014 - 15:22

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