Vijayawada: Andhra Pradesh chief minister Y S Jagan Mohan called the State Election Commission's (SEC's) decision to postpone elections to local bodies “unjustifiable”, and tried to puncture holes in the explanation given by SEC Nimmagadda Ramesh Kumar.
He said the coronavirus (Covid-19) epidemic was in its initial stages in Andhra Pradesh, and therefore, was not a hurdle to holding the local body elections.
Casting aspersions on the neutrality of Ramesh Kumar, and hinting that he was biased towards the Telugu Desam Party owing to caste considerations, Jagan Mohan Reddy alleged, “the-then CM Chandrababu Naidu appointed Nimmagadda Ramesh Kumar as SEC because both of them belong to the same social group, and now, Ramesh Kumar is showing his bias.”
The decision to postpone the local body elections angered the YSR Congress so much that it forced the Chief Minister to conduct his first press conference nine months after assuming power.
Jagan Mohan Reddy lamented that Ramesh Kumar’s statement has hurt him as the SEC took the decision without consulting any senior officials about the coronavirus threat.
The chief minister also objected to the SEC's decision to stop his government from distributing house sites, or transferring collectors, SPs and other officials despite the postponement of elections.
“We were ready to accept these stop orders only if the elections were held as per schedule,” Jagan Mohan Reddy said.
“The Covid-19 threat in the coming days would be due to the arrival of people from various foreign countries as several countries start deportation, unwilling to bear expenses of treatment of foreigners,” he said.