Special Correspondent

Wants exemplary punishment awarded to those involved in human trafficking

  • State accused of botching up Babli project issue
  • BJP claims partymen not involved in passport scam

    HYDERABAD: Telugu Desam party president N. Chandrababu Naidu on Friday made it clear that stringent action would be taken against any party leader found involved in fake passport and human trafficking rackets.

    Describing the involvement of MPs and MLAs of various parties in the racket as "heinous crime", he wanted exemplary punishment be awarded against them including their disqualification and debarring them from contesting all future elections.

    At a press conference, he said coming as it were when the stock of politicians was going down, people were detesting the latest action of MPs and MLAs.

    They would not have imagined that their representatives could stoop to such level.

    `It's about values'

    When asked if he thought the racket had weakened the TRS and strengthened TDP in Telangana, he said, "It is not the question of loss or gain but of fall in political values, character and morality of people's representatives.

    With what face such leaders could face the people?"

    On Babli

    Telugu Desam Party president N. Chandrababu Naidu on Friday contested the Government's claim of the State gaining from Supreme Court's interim order on Babli barrage and accused it with botching it up.

    Addressing a press conference, Mr. Naidu said the Government showed its ignorance by hailing the order that has merely asked the Maharashtra Government not to install crest gates. This was not a big issue as even without installing them it could draw much of the Godavari water as it was a lift irrigation project.

    The party's fear that the Government could not argue the case effectively before the Supreme Court came true, he said. It failed to bring to the notice of the court facts like Central Water Commission's directive to Maharashtra Government to stop works

    Going by the submissions in the court, Andhra Pradesh paid a price for being non-serious all through and committing a series of mistakes, enabling Maharashtra to take advantage. The first mistake was on May 19, 2006 when the two AP officials attending an important meeting called by the CWC in Delhi, did not raise any objection.

    BJP reaction

    Meanwhile, BJP State president Bandaru Dattatreya on Friday asserted that his partymen were not involved in the fake passport scam. Refuting the charge of TRS leader T. Harish Rao about his party's involvement, he told a press conference that the scam was tantamount to treason and a blot on public representatives as also the political parties. He wanted stringent punishment to be given to those involved, irrespective of their political affiliations.

    Asked if TRS leader A.Narendra would be taken into the party if he wanted to return, he quipped " these are hypothetical questions".