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Naidu threatens to launch mass agitation on Babhali issue

Holding the Centre and Congress responsible for Maharashtra government`s attitude, TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu Tuesday threatened to launch a mass agitation programme.



New Delhi: Holding the Centre and
Congress responsible for Maharashtra government`s attitude,
TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu Tuesday threatened to launch a
mass agitation programme if Prime Minister Manmohan Singh
fails to resolve the Babhali issue amicably by August 10.

A day after meeting Singh as part of an all-party
delegation from Andhra Pradesh, he accused the Prime Minister
of not being interested in solving the problems the state has
with Maharashtra.

"Why is he (Singh) silent? Yesterday`s was the third
representation that the parties from Andhra made to the Prime
Minister on the Babhali issue in three years. Still he told
the delegation that he will first talk to technical experts
and see what can be done. He is not interested," he told
reporters here.

He said the Central government headed by Congress
should take responsibility and amicably solve the Babhali
barrage issue. Naidu also alleged that the Babhali barrage was
an "illegal construction" as it is being constructed by
Maharashtra in the "submergence area".

"I am telling the Prime Minister that he should solve
the issue. The Central government and Congress are
responsible. We are giving him 15 days to solve the issue,
otherwise TDP along with like-minded parties will launch a
mass agitation. The date is August 10," he said.

However, the former Andhra Pradesh chief minister
refused to make public the form of his agitation.

Singh had yesterday assured the delegation that he
would intervene and try to sort out the problems between the
two states on Babhali.

Andhra accuses the Maharashtra government of carrying
out illegal construction and installing gates at the Babhali
barrage against a Supreme Court order, but Maharashtra
disputes it.

Naidu said the Maharashtra government has "illegally"
erected the 14 gates at the Babhali barrage in Nanded
district, which is against a Supreme Court order.

"The Maharashtra government has gone against the
directions of the Centre and orders of the Supreme Court. But
still the Prime Minister says he can sort out after consulting
technical experts," he said.

He also accused Chief Minister K Rosaiah of failing to
protect the rights of the state and pursuing the contempt
petition filed against Maharashtra government by Andhra
Pradesh.

"The contempt petition was filed last year and it is
not being pursued. The Andhra government has failed the people
of the state," he said.

He said all steps should be taken to protect the
interests of the lower riparian states.

PTI

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