The Telugu Desam Party leaders in Andhra Pradesh might be crying foul over the issuance of a non-bailable arrest warrant by the Dharmabad court in Maharasthra against their party president and Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu in connection with the 2010 Babli project agitation.
They have also been alleging that it is part of Operation Garuda by the Bharatiya Janata Party government at the Centre to trouble Naidu.
Minister Prattipati Pulla Rao went to the extent of saying that Prime Minister Narendra Modi was envious of Naidu, who got the invitation from the United Nations Organisation to address the meeting on sustainable agriculture.
The Dharmabad first class judicial magistrate court directed the police to produce Naidu and the other leaders before the bench on September 21, around which time Naidu would be leaving for New York. If Naidu doesn’t appear, he will have to face the arrest immediately.
But heart in hearts, the court order came as a blessing disguise for him. At a time when the TDP is planning to test its waters in Telangana in association with the Congress party in the ensuing elections, it would fetch a lot of mileage for him if he is arrested, since the case pertaining to his fight for the interests of Telangana on the Babli project.
Sources in the TDP sources said Naidu was keen to attend before the court not only to declare his respect for the judiciary but also for political considerations.
Since the elections are due in Telangana in November or December, Naidu can claim that the BJP was resorting to witch-hunt ever since the parties parted ways in March this year, sources said.
"Chandrababu Naidu did not even seek bail when he was arrested by the Nanded police when he had staged the protest in the interest of undivided Andhra Pradesh. We will obey, if the court asks us to appear", Naidu's son and Andhra IT minister Lokesh said in his reaction to the news of non-bailable warrants.