Andhra CM stages sit-in to protest EC bias

Amaravati: Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N.Chandrababu Naidu on Wednesday staged a sit-in here to protest against the Election Commission ‘bias’ in transferring election officials and Income Tax (I-T) raids on his TDP’s leaders.

Naidu, also the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) chief, submitted a representation to Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Gopal Krishna Dwivedi and sat on protest before his office, a day before polling begins for the 175-member Assembly and all 25 Lok Sabha seats in the state.

Naidu told reporters that for the first time the Chief Minister of a state was meeting the CEO to submit a memorandum.

Alleging that the poll panel was acting at the behest of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to favour YSR Congress Party (YSRCP), he also claimed that Modi, YSRCP Chief Y.S.Jagan Mohan Reddy and Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao were part of a conspiracy against the TDP.

Naidu said Modi had destroyed other institutions and he was now destroying even the Election Commission, which was supposed to conduct elections in an impartial manner. He alleged that there was a grave danger to democracy.

Naidu said the EC transferring officials including the Chief Secretary had raised questions on its credibility. Kadapa District Superintendent of Police, who was probing the murder of YSRCP leader and Jagan’s uncle Y.S. Vivekananda Reddy was transferred on a complaint by the YSRCP, he alleged.

“Those involved in the murder had tried to erase the evidence from the crime scene and to save themselves they demanded transfer of the SP,” he said.

Naidu said the EC also refused to share IP addresses of those who submitted applications for deleting seven lakh voters. He said this could have helped the Special Investigation Team in bringing the accused to book.

“The Election Commission is resorting to blatant misuse of power to protect them,” he said.

Naidu also took strong exception to I-T raids on TDP officials and asked if there were no corrupt leaders in the YSRCP.

He said I-T was conducting raids even as the model of conduct was in force. He said in the latest incident, the IT officials raided the residence of TDP MP candidate Galla Jayadev’s auditor. “Why are there no I-T raids on YSRCP leaders?” he asked.