Congress Demands De-Recognition of TDP as a Political Party

The Andhra Pradesh Congress Committee on Tuesday demanded de-recognition of the TDP as a political party for its continued failure to fulfil its pre-poll promises.

APCC president N Raghuveera Reddy and other senior leaders submitted a 11 page memorandum to Chief Electoral Officer Bhanwarla. It said, “We implore you to please give necessary directives to the TDP to implement all the promises. If they still fail to fulfil their promises listed in the manifesto we request you to de-recognise TDP and uphold the hallowed democratic values”.

It further added, “We request you to explore various actions that can be taken against them by you, including booking of criminal cases under IPC and Representation of Peoples Act for deception”.

The APCC said that the TDP made as many as 600 promises in its 50 page manifesto and launched a scathing attack on the ruling party. “The fact is that not a shred of any page has been implemented and the people, who elected them believing that these promises would be fulfilled, stand deceived and hopeless. The TDP seems to have opted to incinerate its manifesto”, he wrote.

The representation listed several promises, which Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu said would be fulfilled in toto, but nothing has moved. The promises include farmers loan waiver, DWCRA groups loan waiver, closure of belt shops, agro-processing centres in each district, Market Intervention Fund, Market Stabilisation Fund, smartphones for women, iPads and tablet PCs for college students, Islamic banks for Muslims, Sub-Plan for BCs on the lines of the SC/ST Sub-Plan, etc.

About the government’s Debt Redemption Scheme, the letter said, “This scheme has literally reduced the number of farm loans that need to be serviced. Further the terms and conditions of the scheme were explicit that the promise would be so curtailed that any waiver then would be just too meagre to be labelled as support or help”.

Congress Demands De-Recognition of TDP as a Political Party

The memorandum said the promises were made in the manifesto as if the sky was the limit. “Between page 20 to 23 there is a promise for every caste, without giving thought.

It said the TDP has failed on its promise to construct homes for the homeless. It said, “Now this gets worse than moving from the sublime to the ridiculous. Bills pending from the Congress rule for constructing houses for the poor are not being cleared leading to severe indebtedness for the beneficiaries. Some houses sanctioned by the earlier Congress government are also being cancelled”.

The memorandum enclosed the letter on 11.04.2014 from TDP vice president Mr Ravulapati Seetharama Rao to the Election Commission of India when the latter asked how the TDP proposed to fulfil the range of promises made. Mr Rao’s letter said, “The financial implications of these promises were taken note of. Given the huge revenue accruals and the possible annual increase year after year to the state exchequer the Telugu Desam Party is confident of implementing its manifesto in toto”.

Mr Reddy quoted finance minister Mr Yanamala Ramakrishnudu saying on 12.03.2015, “We have no revenue. Our revenues are less. This revenue deficit will keep continuing even after 2021”. Mr Reddy wrote, “This means that their promises would not be fulfilled even till 2021”.

The memorandum called Mr Naidu and the TDP “habitual offenders when it comes to the delivery of pre-poll promises”. It said this is nothing but a violation of 16A of the Election Symbols (Reservation and Allotment Order), 1968 of Representation of Peoples Act. The TDP also violated the EC guidelines on drafting election manifestos based on the Supreme Court’s direction.

It made a recollection about the TDP and their electoral promises. “Sir, it is incumbent on us to inform you that dumping election promises after electoral gain is a known habit of the TDP under the leadership of Shri Chandrababu Naidu. After the 1996 mid-term elections to Parliament, Shri Naidu as chief minister then hiked the price of subsidised rice, slashed subsidy in agriculture power tariffs and lifted total prohibition. Each of these were done after drumming up the argument that the state is bankrupt and has reached a point where it would need to face cuts in its Plan allocation. He further diluted his promises after the 1998 mid-term polls to the Lok Sabha. Again he dumped his promises after winning the general elections in 1999. Dumping election promises is the known common denominator, while the items that were thrown by the wayside changed over time”.

The memorandum said, “India is an extremely vibrant democracy and leaders and commentators across the world speak of India as the last word in democracy. Now thanks to politicians like Mr Naidu democracy and its spirit stand seriously imperilled. It is time to act and to act swiftly and tellingly against him to see that such habitual offenders do not come into play again in our nation.”