Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu with Chief Electoral Officer Gopal Krishna Dwivedi. Photo/ANI
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu with Chief Electoral Officer Gopal Krishna Dwivedi. Photo/ANI

Andhra Pradesh: Naidu stages dharna in front of EC office

ANI | Updated: Apr 10, 2019 18:20 IST

Amaravati (Andhra Pradesh) [India], Apr 10 (ANI): Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu on Wednesday staged a protest in front of Chief Electoral Officer Gopal Krishna Dwivedi's office here to protest the "illegal and unethical"  Income Tax raids on his party's leaders.
"I am asking the Income Tax department who are they to do only one side raids, only one political party- Telugu Desam Party (TDP). When elections around, it is level playing field automatically they have to treat everyone equal. You have to get information then only go for raids otherwise if you do these type of things it is unjustifiable, incorrect, illegal and unethical," Naidu told reporters here after the meeting.
"Narendra Modi wanted to demolish democracy. That is why I launched the programme 'Save Democracy, Save India'. He has fear. From Delhi, ECI is transferring… Election Commission office has become BJP office. It cannot be tolerated," he said.    
Earlier in the day, Naidu wrote a letter to the Election Commission of India (ECI) accusing it of handling election-related matters pertaining to his state in "undemocratic" and "arbitrary" way especially in the transfer of officials.
"In Andhra Pradesh, ever since the elections were announced and code of conduct came into force, income tax authorities have been targeting only the TDP candidates party workers and its sympathisers, thus creating an atmosphere of fear and terror. None of the candidates belonging to other political parties have been targeted, projecting a message that the TDP candidates and sympathisers alone are the culprits," Naidu said.
He said it was "strange and surprising" that whenever a complaint goes from YSRCP and within hours a police officer is transferred without verifying the facts and giving a chance to the latter to explain his stand and the ground situation.
On Tuesday, I-T had raided premises in various locations related to TDP MP Galla Jayadev.
The Chief Minister in his letter alleged that the ECI is transferring officials without any reason. 
"The Election Commission of India transferred District Collector of Srikakulam, only a day after he joined the assignment.  The DG of Police Intelligence and SP’s of Kadapa and Srikakulam were also shifted without giving any reasonable opportunity to them. The Chief Secretary was again transferred recently. This officer has impeccable track record throughout his career," the letter read. 
Elections to the 175-member Andhra Pradesh Assembly are scheduled to be held on April 11 simultaneously with the Lok Sabha polls. The counting of votes will take place on May 23. (ANI)