Cowardly Attacks On My Life Will Not Deter Me

Paguluchenneru and Pattuchenneru are villages located in the hills of these remote areas with no access road. Members of the tribal community, Chodupalli Beesu, Koneti Betra Tadangi Musiri and others, met me today. They recalled the great work done during my father’s tenure—it was during his time that these villages received power supply and drinking water. It was he who ensured that the benefits of welfare governance reached them through schemes aimed for their upliftment.

“There were only 4 villagers in Paguluchenneru who received pensions up until that time, but your father increased the number to 150, sir. Chandrababu Naidu, however, has slashed them down to 60 and half of them are denied pensions on the pretext of biometrics not being recorded," the tribal villagers lamented.

I felt pained by this injustice being done to tribal communities who are among the most backward sections of our society and among most deprived. These tribal villages cannot forget the contribution of my father for the betterment of their conditions and eagerly awaiting the return of such welfare governance in Andhra Pradesh.

Students from backward communities studying in government school at Makkuva village met me. They expressed their anguish at the BC hostel in the village being closed down in the most insensitive manner. The condition of their government school was pathetic, they complained. Classes were held outside in the open. Large chunks of the ceiling had fallen down with gaping holes. A downpour meant a holiday for the school. Scholarships were not being released and as for the midday meal scheme, children were served rotten eggs! Textbooks were still not issued! The rulers who were preoccupied with encouraging proxy corporate educational institutions, had no interest in government schools, as hundreds of instances have borne out.

This afternoon, quite unexpectedly, I was attacked at the Visakhapatnam airport. I had a providential escape in this knife attack with a shoulder injury. My belief that God’s grace and people’s blessings are with me, got strengthened even further. However, such cowardly attacks will not deter me from my goal of serving the people of the state with commitment. In fact, this dastardly attack has deepened my resolve to commit myself to serving the people of Andhra Pradesh with greater devotion and work even more tirelessly for them.

I have a question for the chief minister—there are 20 promises made by you in your election manifesto to tribals. Have you fulfilled at least one of them? What happened to your election promise to BC communities on scholarships, setting up more residential schools and creating hostel facilities for them? Is it not true that scholarship amounts are being slashed and hostels shut down? Have you been able to set up at least one new residential school in your four and a half years of rule?
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