Following the issue of a non-bailable warrant against Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister and Telugu Desam Party chief Chandrababu Naidu and 15 others by N R Gajbhiye, the first class judicial magistrate of Dharmabad in Nanded district of Maharashtra, the TDP has planned protests across Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.
Condemning the arrest warrant and terming it a ‘conspiracy’, the TDP has called for dharnas to be conducted before the Revenue Divisional Officer and the collectorate offices in both states on Friday. In Hyderabad, the TDP is expected to hold a dharna in front the district collectorate office in Nampally over the warrant’s issue, terming it ‘illegal’.
Speaking to TNM, TDP spokesperson Lanka Dinakar alleged that the court order was altered by authorities.
“Though the Dharmabad magistrate issued the order on July 5 to submit all the accused, including Chandrababu Naidu, along with those who were part of the Babli project agitation in the year 2010 on or before Aug 16, 2018. But, the court order was altered manually by striking out August 16, 2018, and altered it as September 21, 2018,” he said.He also lashed out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP President Amit Shah for indulging in vendetta politics.
“It shows the clear vendetta against the TDP and Chandrababu Naidu after exiting the NDA. Naidu has been targeted by BJP’s Modi and Amit Shah. These kinds of things will not stop affect Naidu as five crore Andhra Telugus and four crore Telangana Telugus are with him,” he added.
The CM and 15 others were issued an arrest warrant over the Babli barrage irrigation project agitation in Maharashtra in 2010. At the time of the protest, Naidu was in the opposition in the united Andhra Pradesh. He was taken into custody along with 76 Telugu Desam Party (TDP) legislators as they violated prohibitory orders in Nanded. They were arrested and later released.
Maharashtra and undivided Andhra Pradesh had locked horns over the sharing of Godavari River water. In the 1970s, the Godavari Water Disputes Tribunal awarded a sharing treaty. However, AP slammed Maharashtra for building the Babli barrage over the over the river, contending the areas downstream wouldn’t receive water.
In 2010, the TDP had organised a massive agitation over what it called the illegal construction of the project. Naidu, who was then the Leader of Opposition in undivided Andhra Pradesh, along with 40 MLAs, entered Maharashtra and was heading towards Babli Project in violation of the ban orders imposed by the neighbouring state.
The police then arrested Naidu and others and registered a non-bailable case against them.
In 2013, however, the Supreme Court ruled in favour of Maharashtra, but attached clauses to ensure that there was adequate water supply downstream.