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Katju Forces TDP Go On Defensive!

The ruling Telugu Desam Party has virtually gone on the defensive with the sharp criticism from former Supreme Court judge Markandey Katju over the arrest of political satirist Inturi Ravi Kiran by the AP government in violation of the freedom of expression granted by the Constitution.

A day after Katju wrote a letter to President of India Pranab Mukherjee and Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking dismissal of Naidu government and imposition of President’s Rule in Andhra Pradesh, the TDP leaders made every effort to defend the arrest of Ravi Kiran.

On Thursday, media advisor to Naidu Parakala Prabhakar said Katju had misunderstood the government’s move.

“Our chief minister gives the highest priority to the freedom of expression. He never came in the way of constructive criticism and never resorted to vengeance even if the opposition parties made wildest allegations against him.

However, there is a thin line between sarcasm and vulgarity in criticising the ruling party leaders. No person of any self-respect will tolerate if there are vulgar postings against him or her that would be hated by a cultured society,” Prabhakar said.

He wondered how one would justify depicting women legislators in bikinis and using unparlimentary language against them in the name of freedom of expression.

“I am sure Justice Katju would agree with us,” he said.

Parakala reminded that Ravi Kiran had made similar postings against Araku MLA Kothapalli Geetha in 2014 and the YSR Congress party leaders themselves had filed a case against him under SC/ST Atrocities Act.

“Didn’t they feel it was freedom of expression then?” he asked.

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