Andhra threatens Telangana CM with counter case

Hyderabad, June 16 (IANS) Amid speculation that Telangana’s Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) may issue notice to Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu in the cash-for-vote scam, Andhra government on Tuesday threatened to hit back with counter case against his counterpart K. Chandrasekhar Rao.

Andhra Agriculture Minister P. Pulla Rao told reporters that the ACB of Telangana has no right to issue notice to Naidu and that in case a notice is issued, Andhra government will give a befitting reply.

Stating that there are 87 cases against Chandrasekhar Rao in Andhra Pradesh, he said there were cases being investigated by Special Investigation Team (SIT) and CID.

“There is also a case of phone tapping. We have evidence which will lead to the collapse of TRS (Telangana Rashtra Samiti) government,” he claimed.

The Telugu Desam Party (TDP) government also dismissed reports that Naidu may resign. “There is no question of Mr Naidu resigning. We are not afraid,” he said.

Another minister Atchan Naidu said Telangana chief minister can’t escape from law in phone tapping case. “Mr Naidu has done nothing wrong,” he said.

Earlier, Naidu held a meeting with his cabinet colleagues to discuss the latest developments and the strategy to counter any possible notice.

The meeting was held amid series of developments since morning. ACB Director General A. K. Khan met Chandrasekhar Rao while Telangana’s Director General of Police Anurag Sharma met Governor E.S.L. Narasimhan. Hyderabad Police Commissioner Mahender Reddy was also present during police chief’s meeting with Narasimhan, who is governor of both the states.

Khan is understood to have briefed Rao of the progress in the investigations in the case.

A city court on Monday had extended judicial custody of TDP legislator A. Revanth Reddy and two other till June 29 in the scam.

Revanth Reddy, a member of Telangana assembly, was arrested by ACB on May 31 while he was offering Rs.50 lakh to nominated member Elvis Stephenson to make him vote for TDP-BJP candidate in legislative council election.

An audio tape of Naidu’s alleged telephonic conversation with Stephenson was aired on some television channels on June 7.

Leaders of the TRS have alleged that Naidu is the mastermind and demanded that he be booked.

Andhra government has denied the allegations and claimed that the audio tape is fake. It also alleged that TRS government is tapping phones of Naidu and his minister.

Naidu, also the TDP chief, met Prime Minister Narendra Modi to demand a probe into phone tapping.

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