Ideal location is being examined, says Botcha

AP Congress Committee president Botcha Satyanarayana has said that the government was prepared to install the statue of B.R. Ambedkar on the Assembly premises and added that the ideal location was being examined.

The matter was already discussed in the Assembly and Cabinet, Mr. Satyanarayana told media persons after paying floral tributes to the statue of Ambedkar on Tank Bund road where the official birth anniversary celebrations of the architect of the Constitution was conducted.

A similar view that the government had decided to set up the statue in Assembly was also expressed by Deputy Speaker Mallu Bhatti Vikramarka separately. He said a final view would be taken in consultation with all the political parties. He was talking to media persons after garlanding a portrait of Ambedkar in the committee hall of Assembly.

A few supporters of Telangana Mala Mahanadu shouted slogans against Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy over the issue when he went to garland the statue on Tank Bund. Ministers Ponnala Laxmaiah, Basavaraju Saraiah, Danam Nagender, G. Prasad Kumar and M. Mukesh Goud, Secunderabad MP Anjan Kumar Yadav, Rajya Sabha member K. Chiranjeevi, CPI general secretary Suravaram Sudhakar Reddy, CPI (M) State secretary B.V. Raghavulu and BJP leaders G. Kishan Reddy and B. Dattatreya also garlanded the statue.

A surprise visitor on the occasion was Vishwa Hindu Parishad leader Praveen Togadia who demanded that the reservations to weaker sections which were the brainchild of Ambedkar should not be extended to Christians and Muslims. Only Hindu SCs and STs should get them.

At an adjacent pandal where a public meeting was held, Social Welfare Minister Pithani Satyanarayana announced Rs. 1 crore for the facelift of Ambedkar Bhavan on Lower Tank Bund road. He said the government was trying to see that the loans to SCs and STs reached them directly without any intermediary linkages.

‘No misuse of Act'

Health Minister Kondru Muralimohan derided pseudo criticism of Ambedkar. He denied misuse of SC and ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. A number of processions by Ambedkar organisations reached Tank Bund throughout the day. YSR Congress president Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy participated in Ambedkar Jayanti celebrations organised by the party. BJP leaders G. Kishan Reddy, K. Laxman and Baddam Bal Reddy also participated in a similar function in their party office.

Lok Satta party president Jayaprakash Narayan said it amounted to injustice to a national leader if Ambedkar was identified with SCs.