Andhra Christian minority leaders castigate Naidu for comments

Amaravati, Jan 12 (IANS) Several Christian minority leaders in Andhra Pradesh castigated Telugu Desam Party (TDP) national president Nara Chandrababu Naidu for his alleged recent religious comments while attacking Chief Minister Y. S. Jagan Mohan Reddy.

Besides criticism, TDP lost a longtime minority leader, Philip C. Tocher.

“I am pained to inform you that I am resigning from the TDP’s active membership with immediate effect from this day due to the sudden out blast remarks made by Naidu against Christian community,” wrote Tocher to party state president Kinjarapu Atchannaidu recently.

Tocher requested Atchannaidu to accept his resignation as he has been facing grave questioning by his fellow community members across the state.

He was with TDP since its inception in 1983 and went on to be nominated as the Anglo-Indian MLA during the TDP regime from 2014 to 2019.

A group of people protested in Visakhapatnam at the GVMC Mahatma Gandhi statue demanding Naidu to apologise to the minority community.

In Vijayawada, a Dalit Christian rights leader, Perike Varaprasadada Rao, accused that Naidu was making that kind of statements to survive in politics.

Likewise, John Benny Lingam, another minority leader from Krishna district wrote to the superintendent of police to take action on the former Chief Minister.

“We suspect that Naidu is using his men to break the idols and push the crime on Christians. So please arrest and interrogate him to extract the truth,” alleged Lingam, who supported TDP in the 2019 elections.

Across the state, several other minority leader and community elders condemned Naidu, prompting the party to take conciliatory tone towards the community.

TDP posted a conciliatory tweet on Tuesday in Telugu, attaching a video of party leader Varla Ramaiah, which surprisingly was not found again after some hours.

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