Nellore: YSRCP criticised State Election Commissioner (SEC) Nimmagadda Ramesh Kumar for being adamant on conducting local body elections in the State during vaccination times by risking public lives just to favour his political obligations.
Addressing a press conference, Minister for Municipal Administration Botsa Satyanarayana said that SEC Ramesh Kumar was speaking as a political leader, who has been working for personal interests and acting unilaterally. He said that the SEC has both the authority and responsibility to conduct the elections and also to oversee the safety of the public. The Minister said that public health is the main responsibility of the government and it is not the ideal time for holding polls.
He questioned, who will be held responsible if anything happens to employees or the public during polls. And what would be the loss if the elections were postponed for three months. Minister Botsa Satyanarayana said that people were watching for whom Nimmagadda Ramesh Kumar has been working and for whom he is favouring. He asked why elections were not held during the term of TDP.
The Minister said that the government is not afraid of the polls, as Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy has put public welfare in the forefront and has been relentless working in transforming the lives of the poor and weaker sections of the society.
Meanwhile, at a separate press conference, YSRCP MLA Ambati Rambabu flayed State Election Commissioner Nimmagadda Ramesh Kumar for aiming to hold elections before his tenure even after the state government has made it clear that people’s lives are important, who have been eagerly waiting for a vaccine and not elections. He said that the government had moved the Supreme Court and will make it clear that the State can only hold either a vaccination drive to save people from covid or conduct elections, but not both at the same time due to insufficient workforce. He said that Nimmagadda Ramesh Kumar, Chandrababu and Lokesh will be in Hyderabad fearing the pandemic but the concerns of the people and employees do not matter to them.
Ambati Rambabu criticised SEC Ramesh Kumar for not having concern towards the lives of government employees, who will be discharging duties during panchayat elections and making the government responsible for adverse outcomes, despite opposing to conduct polls in the COVID pandemic situation. He questioned Nimmagadda Ramesh, why he didn't conduct elections in 2018 when Chandrababu was Chief Minister and why didn’t he move to the court then for conducting polls. He pointed that Ramesh Kumar has held a press conference in a protective glass chamber but had left no concern towards the employees and public putting their lives at risk.
Assembly Speaker Tammineni Sitaram slammed Nimmagadda Ramesh Kumar for being in constitutional post and ignoring Right to Live Article. He said the decision to conduct local body elections was only to serve some vested interests and suggested to wait till the apex court decision on it. He proposed for a referendum on conducting local body elections if necessary.