ANDHRA PRADESH

Digvijay reviews relief work, slams Naidu

MACHILIPATNAM, DEC.30. The AICC general secretary and incharge of Andhra Pradesh affairs, Digvijay Singh, and the Andhra Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) president, K. Keshava Rao, visited Machilipatnam and Manginapudi beach on Thursday.

They reviewed the situation and relief works with the Congress functionaries and senior officials at the government guesthouse and enquired about the assistance being provided to the affected people.

Speaking to media, Mr. Singh described the tsunami attack as a grave tragedy that caught people unawares.

Compliments State

However, the State and the Centre responded spontaneously in extending assistance to the affected areas. Since the Prime Minister wanted the incident to be treated as a national calamity, the relief works would be further expedited and more assistance provided to the people. Mr. Singh was critical of the Telugu Desam Party president, N. Chandrababu Naidu, for his "attempts to politicise a natural calamity and gain mileage out of it. We strongly object the way in which Mr. Naidu is trying to play politics on deaths."

Mr. Singh advised the officials to be extra careful as the seawaters continued to be rough. He distributed relief material and rice to the affected people.

Mr. Keshava Rao questioned the credibility of Mr. Naidu's criticism about the relief works. "What technicalities does Mr. Naidu know? He is only trying to derive some mileage out of the tragedy," he pointed out, advising the TDP chief to refrain from such attempts.

`Security inadequate'

Meanwhile, the senior Congress leaders, Mallu Ravi and V. Hanumantha Rao, who were also present, expressed their displeasure over the security arrangements made at the government guesthouse.

And, they wanted the officials concerned to rectify the situation to ensure that such lapses did not recur.

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