Andhra Pradesh

Pawan, Naidu, BJP – Are the lines blurring in Andhra Pradesh?

It is a pattern too obvious to be ignored. In recent days, both Pawan Kalyan and Chandrababu Naidu’s political commentary is too similar to the BJP line. In fact, the lines are blurring. 

Pawan Kalyan, tweet quoting CS Rangarajan, the chief priest of the Chilkur Balaji temple near Hyderabad and declared he was in agreement with his questioning the governments for collecting 23.5 per cent tax only from Hindu temples. The reference is to how places of worship in other religions do not pay tax even as subsidies for pilgrims to Haj and Jerusalem have been increased by Andhra Pradesh government. This is the kind of issue, which anyone would expect the BJP to highlight.

Chandrababu Naidu’s Telugu Desam has been focused on Tirumala, attacking chief minister Jaganmohan Reddy for allegedly refusing to sign a declaration of faith that pilgrims from other religions are expected to do at the Hindu temple. The reference is to Jagan being a practising Christian. Naidu’s party did not focus much on these issues even when it was in an alliance with the BJP but to wear Hinduism on its sleeve, suggests an inclination to keep the miffed BJP happy.

On Sunday, Pawan and Naidu had reason to smile if they heard the PM’s Mann ki Baat. Narendra Modi emphasised on the importance of the mother tongue, asserting that no one can progress without full command over the mother tongue. In Andhra Pradesh, it is being interpreted as a jibe at Jagan’s decision to switch all schools from class 1 to 6, to English medium, even though Telugu will be a compulsory subject till class 10. Both Pawan and Naidu have been critical of Jagan’s education move. 

While Naidu has been going overboard trying to get back into the good books of the BJP, Pawan so far had maintained a distance.  

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