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Why Drones Flying Over Chandrababu Naidu's River-front House Triggered A Massive Political-slugfest In Andhra Pradesh

Written By Krishna Murthy | Mumbai | Published:

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  • Drone cameras hovering around former Andhra Pradesh chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu's Amaravati residence has sparked a huge political slugfest between the ruling YSRCP govt and the TDP
  • While the TDP has been questioning how can drones fly over a high security zone, the ruling YSRCP govt says it was part of flood surveillance and all necessary permissions were taken
  • The house, owned by Naidu's close friend Lingamaneni Ramesh, has been under the scanner ever since the TDP chief moved into the posh bungalow in 2016

Drone cameras hovering around former Andhra Pradesh chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu's Amaravati residence have sparked a huge political slugfest between the ruling YSRCP govt and the TDP. While the TDP has been questioning how can drones fly over a high-security zone, the ruling YSRCP govt says it was part of flood surveillance and all necessary permissions were taken.

The house, owned by Naidu's close friend Lingamaneni Ramesh, has been under the scanner ever since the TDP chief moved into the posh bungalow in 2016. The house is located close to River Krishna bank and this, the YSRCP says, violates environmental norms. Officials quote that the house is built within 100 meters from the river in violation of River Conservancy Act.

READ: Karnataka Floods: NDRF Rescues 20 Foreigners Stranded In A Resort, Details Here

Last week, TDP workers caught two people flying drones outside Naidu's house. When the police detained the two, the accused revealed that they had sought permission from the irrigation department to record water flow along the river bank. The TDP activists staged a dharna outside Naidu's residence for the security breach.

Meanwhile, Irrigation Minister Anil Kumar Yadav called for a press conference to assure that drones were indeed used to assess the flood situation as inflow at the Prakasam Barrage in Vijayawada was raising steadily.  

"We have almost rehabilitated everyone, and are also taking precautions in case the the floods situation worsens. As far as the drone is corned which has sparked protest, it is a common phenomenon whereby whenever there is a flood, we make use of the drone system to survey the flood hit zones. Chandrababu Naidu's house happens to fall  in between the flood zone area. I dont know why these TDP people are raising an issue when the survey is being conducted with the prior consent of the Government,"  said Irrigation Minister Anil Kumar Yadav.

The political slugfest went a notch higher when the local tahsildar served notices to Naidu and 31 other residences along the Krishna river bank to vacate the premises immediately in view of rising floodwaters.

Naidu's son and former Andhra Pradesh IT minister Nara Lokesh took offence to this and posted a number of tweets claiming the Andhra Pradesh government is deliberately trying to ensure Naidu is shunted out of his residence. In one of the tweets, Lokesh alleged that boats were deliberately stuck inside the gates of Prakasam Barrage to prevent water from flowing out which will cause flooding upstream where Naidu's house is located. 

Naidu's Amaravati residence has been at the centre of controversy ever since the YSRCP govt came to power. In June, Jagan Mohan Reddy held a press conference in Praja Vedika, a meeting hall next to Naidu's residence and ordered for its demolition after the meeting ended. A notice was then served to demolish Naidu's residence too. The TDP claims that the YSRCP is deliberately playing vendetta politics in the state.

READ: Karnataka Floods 2018 LIVE UPDATES: CM Kumaraswamy Visits Flood-hit Kodagu; Army & NDRF Personnel Deployed For Rescue And Relief Efforts

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