Home PoliticsGossip

Jagan counter to TDP: To seek Bharat Ratna for NTR?

Jagan counter to TDP: To seek Bharat Ratna for NTR?

As the controversy over renaming of NTR health university as Dr YSR health university continues to hit headlines due to the war of words between the ruling YSR Congress party and opposition Telugu Desam Party in Andhra Pradesh, chief minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy is said to contemplating a new idea to turn the tables on the TDP.

The YSRCP leaders may be justified to a large extent for their argument that the TDP leaders, including their president N Chandrababu Naidu, have no locus standi and moral right to question the move, as they had shown utter disregard for NTR when he was alive and were responsible, albeit indirectly, for his death.

Many people say the TDP leaders might not have moral right to question Jagan’s move, but it has certainly hurt the sentiments of ordinary NTR fans and common people in general who still revere the legendary actor and former chief minister.

So, they have every right to question the Jagan government’s decision and so, it might prove counterproductive to the YSRC in the next elections. So, the YSRC leadership is definitely answerable to them, as they were not convinced with Jagan’s argument in the assembly.

But since the assembly has already passed the bill changing the name of the health university, there is nothing Jagan can do now. If he withdraws the bill, it will bring a bad name to him and he may have to face criticism from YSR fans.

So, Jagan is said to be toying with the idea of honouring NTR in a different manner. His government might recommend “Bharat Ratna,” the country’s highest civilian award to N T Rama Rao, on the occasion of the latter’s birth centenary year, which is being observed across the Telugu land.

Since the chief minister has been maintaining good relations with the Centre and NTR’s birth centenary is also being celebrated now, the Centre might not raise much objection to the same. In fact, awarding Bharat Ratna to NTR would also enhance the popularity of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

In the last 26 years after NTR’s death, the TDP had never lobbied for Bharat Ratna to NTR. During this period, Naidu had been in power for more than 14 years, but he never put forth the demand with the Centre, even when his party was part of the NDA government twice.

The reason was that if the Centre grants Bharat Ratna to NTR, it will be received by his widow Nandamuri Lakshmi Parvathi, which Naidu and NTR’s family members didn’t want. They did not like Lakshmi Parvati to get the recognition as NTR’s official wife.

Now, things have changed. Lakshmi Parvathi is in YSR Congress party and it will be a plus point for the YSRCP if she receives the Bharat Ratna award from the hands of President of India. 

This will not only fetch a huge political mileage for Jagan, but also a nation-wide respect to Lakshmi Parvathi. It will undo whatever damage Jagan has faced due to renaming of health university.

That will be a big moral defeat for the TDP and Naidu. They cannot oppose the awarding of Bharat Ratna to NTR openly. Even if they oppose awarding it to Lakshmi Parvathi, it will only bring a bad name to them.

Even if the Centre rejects Jagan’s demand for awarding Bharat Ratna to NTR, the blame will go on to the BJP and the YSRC will still gain the political mileage. The BJP will lose the moral ground to criticise Jagan for renaming the university.


Tags: Andhra Pradesh Bharat Ratna CM Jagan