Naidu wants a Southerner as President

Telugu Desam president N Chandrababu Naidu has suggested that the next President or Vice-President be from South India. He said here on Thursday that renowned scientist APJ Abdul Kalam, a southerner, performed well as President and won all-round appreciation in the past. Again, one of the two posts should be given to a South Indian, he said and announced that he would hold talks with like-minded parties in Delhi soon to press his demand.

Naidu who organised a road-show here in support of his party candidate Damachrla Janardhan, assured that the TDP, if voted to power, would return the lands of VANPIC to the original farmers. There was a clear clause in the Land Acquisition Act that if the acquired land was not utilised for the specified purpose by the companies, the government should take back the lands and return them to farmers, the former chief minister pointed out. He also assured that the TDP would launch a health insurance scheme for the poor and give Rs 1,000 dole to the unemployed youth if it formed government in 2014.

Alleging that former chief minister YS Rajasekhara Reddy had resorted to several irregularities and looted the state’s mineral wealth, he said the previous TDP government had leased the galaxy granite quarry at Chimakaruthy in Prakasam district for Rs 44,000 per cubic metre but the YSR government reduced the price to Rs 4,400 and benefited those close to him.

Refuting the allegations of YSRCP that TDP was behind the cases against YS Jagan, Naidu said the CBI was continuing investigation and filing cases as per the directions given by the High Court. “TDP has nothing to do with it. I have no personal rivalry with Jagan,” he clarified.