The K. Chandrashekar Rao-led TRS state government was seeing the entire fight against Coronavirus through a communal prism from the very beginning, and, with its biased mindset, hiding facts and not revealing the true situation to the people, said BJP Telangana state unit president and MP Bandi Sanjay Kumar.
Making several serious allegations against the TRS government’s approaching to fighting Covid-19, he said that because of vote bank politics, the government was hiding details of cases. He said that Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao has a habit that when something good happens, he rushes to claim credit, but if something goes wrong, he tries to blame the Centre.
He said that due to communal fixation of Chief Minister Rao and MIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi, poor Muslims are facing problems. S.N.C.N. Acharyulu of Deccan Chronicle caught up with Mr Sanjay for an exclusive interview. Excerpts.
How do you appraise the fight against Coronavirus as is being managed by the TRS government?
The TRS government has no sincerity in fighting Coronavirus. The state government is not revealing facts. Since the beginning, they have had a communally tainted view. It is hiding facts on cases due to vote bank politics. The TRS government feels if it tells the truth, minority Muslims would distance themselves away from TRS. The KCR government is ‘upar sherwani, andar pareshani’. People are voluntarily cooperating to lockdown, but problem is state government is not acting strictly in implementing it.
What might be the actual current scenario in this combat against Coronavirus?
CM Chandrashekar Rao said a few weeks ago that we would become Covid-free soon. Then again, a few days ago, he said that cases are reducing. Now, the number of Coronavirus positive cases is increasing. Mr Rao has no factual information. Officials at the lower level are feeling the pressure. Unless the TRS government acts seriously and sincerely, the problem will not come under control.
Should some activities at least not be given relaxation from lockdown?
Giving relaxation to some activities from lockdown, the Central government has given a free hand to the state governments to take a decision according to the local situation. The TRS government did not give exemptions to any activity in view of increasing number of positive cases.
TRS alleges the Centre is not giving sufficient funds to fighting the pandemic?
The Central government is giving every single paisa being spent by the state government. CM Rao thanked the Central government in the beginning. It is KCR’s style – claim credit for all good, pass the buck for anything that goes wrong. Where is the rice and pulses given by the Central government? What did the Centre say about construction and Singareni workers and what is the TRS government doing? The TRS government must give an account and clarity over funds given by the Central government and how the state spent it.
Is an all-party meeting needed to discuss the pandemic?
Yes, most certainly. The Chief Minister is taking decisions without consulting anyone. It is not clear whether field-level officers are giving wrong information to him, or if after learning the facts, KCR is behaving autocratically. Prime Minister Modi is regularly speaking to opposition party leaders, consulting all Chief Ministers, media heads and a large cross-section of people. Why is CM Rao hesitating to hold an all-party meeting? If the CM holds all-party meeting, Opposition parties will bring field-level problems to his notice. This will give a good signal to people that all parties are working together.
The state government is distributing rice and pulses to poor people. Are you satisfied with its treatment of vulnerable sections most impacted by lockdown?
The TRS government is distributing rice and pulses to poor people given by the Central government. The state government has to give additional help, which KCR is not giving. The KCR government is distributing on basis of ration cards. If ration cards are not there, government should distribute rice and pulses on basis of Aadhar card. There are thousands of people who have applied for white ration cards and details are available with state government. The BJP is demanding that the government must distribute rice and pulses to even those who have applied for ration cards.
If the CM holds all-party meeting, we can discuss all these issues, including problems of migrant workers. Due to non-supply of food grains, migrant workers are trying to return to their home states. Chandrashekar Rao is all rhetoric and no action. He says migrant workers are partners, but he is silently forcing a massive exodus.
Is the TRS wrong in saying the Opposition should not resort to blame game during a crisis?
No political party is resorting to the blame game, except the TRS. The pink party and media under its fear or control is trying to pawn off blame for its mistakes on to the Central government. When Centre announces some relaxations in lockdown, the state denies them. Opposition parties are giving suggestions, but Mr Rao and his government are taking it as criticism because of their guilty conscience.
Why has Hyderabad (the GHMC area) become the biggest red zone for Covid in the state?
The TRS government has encouraged Muslims to go to Muscat. After returning from Muscat, the state government did not make any appeal to them to be quarantined because it fears the MIM. If the CM would have been able to ask Asaduddin Owaisi to appeal to them, the situation would not come to this level. Over 95 per cent of cases in Hyderabad have happened because of Muslims, who choose not to respond to advisories and precautions.
The communal situation has worsened so much because of KCR that Hindus are wary of buying anything from Muslims-owned shops. TRS and MIM are thus damaging businesses of poor. The TRS government is communal and is viewing the problem with a biased and coloured prism. It is no surprise therefore that KCR has imposed restrictions on funerals of Hindus but not mentioned about Muslims.