Vijayawada Central MLA Malladi Vishnu has defended the arrests of workers and leaders of various political parties during third round of Rachabanda.

Addressing a press conference here on Wednesday he said that the police only arrested those who were trying to obstruct officials from distributing ration cards and other benefits to the poor.

Criticising leaders of the different political parties, who had been raising a hue and cry, Mr. Vishnu said that their claims that the ruling Congress with help from the police was trying to stifle the voice of the Opposition that was merely trying to articulate the problems of the poor were “ridiculous”.

He said that the Opposition leaders should ask themselves if the way they behaved at the Rachabanda programme was constructive and proper. The police acted in the interest of the public in 55th division on Tuesday. The allegations against the ruling party and the police were politically motivated. An anxiety that they would never be elected again was at the bottom of the Opposition party leaders, Mr Vishnu said.

Giving statistics the MLA said that 7,622 new ration cards, 2,656 new pensions and credit linkage to the tune of Rs 23 crore were given/extended to beneficiaries in the Central Constituency.

He said a large number of the applications received were for housing. This was a problem that required to be addressed.

The MLA said that Telugu Desam president N. Chandrababu Naidu had made a total volte-face on agriculture and welfare schemes. Criticising the statements Mr. Naidu made in the city in the morning the MLA said that everyone knew his policies on agriculture and subsidies, but today he was shedding ‘crocodile tears”. There were several falsehoods in Mr Naidu’s criticism of the way the Kiran Kumar Reddy Government handled relief and rehabilitation after different cyclones that hit the state, he added.

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