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A year of political turmoil, scams, raids and compromise

It was an year of uncertainty, turmoil, polarisation and changing political equations besides active law enforcing authorities hogging the lime light with a string of scams coming to light even as the Congress government held on to its majority to wade through a no confidence motion that has seen chinks in the ruling party.

The state has inherited the legacy of political uncertainty and mass protests from the previous year and it plunged into further crisis with Telangana movement gaining all round support and bandh after bandh followed by the Sakala Janula Samme disrupting the normal life in the state. The Samme has roped in all sections of people and it was a virtual shutdown in the region.

Telangana Congress MLAs and Ministers buckled under pressure on more than one occasion and the administration looked very meek and the cricket savvy chief minister took lot of time to take guard and adjust his stance with opposition and his own party cadre bowling bouncer after bouncer. After ducking all the high rising deliveries, he finally got control of the affairs with the no confidence motion moved by TDP and TRS blowing away. But the motion has done some damage to his party as a section of legislators loyal to Kada MP YS Jagan Mohan Reddy openly standing in support of the motion.

Chiranjeevi’s MLAs have saved the day for Congress government but TDP could rip open the Congress wounds in public glare. Telangana issue had seen the polarisation on a large scale with legislators from TDP, Congress and PRP standing up for the Telangana cause. A situation was created where a strong public opinion was evoked in support of the cause, but things fizzled out faster than the build-up.

Polavaram tenders pushed TRS to the back foot and there were few takers for its theory of business interests need not meddle with ideology.

Kiran Kumar Reddy had to sail through all the dissent from within and looked confident after defeating the no confidence motion. For a long time he could not convene a proper cabinet meeting for a multiple of reasons. He is coming to grips with the changing situation and gaining muscle slowly and steadily. His other problem has been the divided cabinet which has members who do not see eye to eye with Dr P Shankar Rao targeting Home Minister Sabita Indra Reddy.

Speaker’s office witnessed a flood of resignations and demand for disqualification, a feat that has become common since the eve of 2009 elections where the Speaker had to decide on the disqualification of rebel TRS members. Speaker Nadendla Manohar’s approach, rather delay, on the issue of disqualification of Congress members for defying the whip was concerned drew flak from some quarters.

While Satyam Ramalinga Raju and his aides could finally get bail, CBI had become active with the arrest of Gali brothers in the OMC irregularities. Y Sri Lakshmi became the first IAS officer to be arrested and was suspended following her one-day remand in jail. State Mineral Development Corporation Chief VD Raja Gopal is still in jail facing the charges in the mining scam.

Sabita, the then minister for mines and a group of other ministers were questioned in this connection. CBI state chief Lakshminarayana gained more footage and space in newspaper columns than any politician or star for some time when there was a raid on YS Jagan Mohan Reddy’s residence and offices. Former APIIC chief BP Acharya and the institution came under scanner in the Emmar Properties scam and many big names came out of bag including film stars, politicians and entrepreneurs. Koneru Prasad was sent to jail along with some others and of late a liquor and sand mafia are caught in a whirl of raids and corruption.

Arrest of officials for owning assets beyond their known sources of income has become a routine and this year too had a sprinkle of them and in one case it was a police officer.
On the death roll, was a series of accidents of the kin of popular public figures on the western suburb starting with of actor Kota Srinivasa Rao’s son followed by cricketer Md Azharuddin’s boy and Congress leader Komatreddy Venkatreddy’s sibling.

The death of Satya Sai Baba has shaken the community of believers and the tussle for his Trust and assets went on for some time and good sense prevailed and the institutions seems to be back to normal. Tollywood has lost some veterans including MS Reddy, writer Mullapudi Venkaramana, director EVV Satyanrayana, producer Dasari Padma and some others.

The city has witnessed an attack on Chandrayangutta MLA Akbaruddin Owaisi and in north coastal Andhra, Maoists have sent signals that they are back again. Drug mafia suddenly went on a new high with names of Tollywood stars and their family members along with children of elite class of Jubilee Hills coming to the fore.

Chiranjeevi’s son Ram Charan Teja was engaged to Upasana Kamineni and the high profile event was witnessed by who is who of film, business and political circles. Dukudu remains the blockbuster of the year while Bezawada was the most disappointing picture of the year.

With political unrest, the one day international between India and West Indies was held in Visakhapatnam.

In the year end, there was no answer to Why this Kolaveri D? (INN)

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