A day after the demolition of the Praja Vedika constructed during the regime of Chandrababu Naidu, the Andhra Pradesh government has issued a notice to the former chief minister to vacate his residence.
According to the government, the house violates environmental norms and 28 buildings in total have been issued notices as they are built less than 100 metres from the Krishna River bank.
Last week, Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy had ordered the demolition of Praja Vedika (people grievances’ cell), calling it illegal and claiming the structure violated the norms of the River Conservancy Act, 1884, since it was built on the banks of the Krishna river. Under the Act, no construction activity should take place within 500 m of the river.
Senior YSR Congress Party leader and Rajya Sabha member Vijayasai Reddy later said Naidu’s private residence is also “illegal” and needs to be vacated immediately.
“The private residence where Naidu is staying is also illegal and Naidu should vacate the place immediately. If a property has been identified as illegal and if it’s constructed on the river bed, the only option left is to demolish,” Reddy said in a tweet on Thursday.
Jagan has, on earlier occasions, hinted that all illegal constructions on the river bed will be brought down.
Naidu’s current residence is a guest house leased out from industrialist Lingamaneni (who ran Air Costa). It is situated right next to Praja Vedika, which was demolished on Wednesday. Cabinet minister Botsa Satyanarayana had earlier also said that the focus would be on Naidu’s residence, which the party alleges is unauthorised.
However, TDP leaders have said that the decision to demolish Praja Vedika is vengeful and has more to do with political ego than the benefit of the state. They had also said this would be a complete waste of public exchequer funds. Praja Vedika is estimated to have cost Rs 8 crore.
“How is it vendetta? We have proof to show it is illegal and which is why it is being demolished. And this will be a drive. All the illegal structures in the state will be demolished soon,” Tirumala Tirupati Devasthnam Board chairman and YSRCP senior leader YV Subba Reddy told.
Since Naidu’s residence is a private property, a demolition order cannot be directly passed by the government. There is also a pending court case.
YSRCP MLA Alla Rama Ramakrishna Reddy, who defeated Naidu’s son Nara Lokesh in the recent polls, had said the issue will be dealt with legally and the TDP chief needs to look for an alternative.
Meanwhile, senior TDP leaders have hinted that Naidu is considering moving out and is looking for other private properties on the outskirts of Vijayawada. They also claimed that a few farmers from Uddandarayuni Palem village in Amaravati, who could be TDP supporters, have offered Naidu a piece of land to construct a permanent residence.