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Telangana minister accuses BJP of tokenism for nominating a tribal candidate

Telangana minister accuses BJP of tokenism for nominating a tribal candidate

BRS leader and Telangana minister KT Rama Rao (file photo)

Telangana Minister K T Rama Rao (KTR) said the NDA's decision to field a tribal leader for the Presidential election is "tokenism". The BJP has chosen Droupadi Murmu for the July 18 election.

The BJP has chosen former Jharkhand governor Droupadi Murmu. If chosen, she will be the first tribal leader and the second woman to be Indian President.

The Minister of Municipal Administration and Urban Development of Telangana said his party does not believe in tokenism. "It is not about Murmu's candidature. She represents a party heavily reliant on unconstitutional practices." He added that his party is "vehemently opposing" the BJP candidate for the same reason.

Rao opined that the Modi government has successfully pulled down democratically elected governments in eight states including Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh.

He pointed out that the situation of Dalits did not change much after Ram Nath Kovind became the President. Drawing similarities between the current President being Dalit and the tribal background of Murmu, Rao said the BJP hasn't done anything for the welfare of the tribal community in the last eight years.

The TRS leader brought up the tribal university promised to Telangana as part of the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act. It has not been implemented yet. He also noted that the NDA government forcefully took away seven blocks from Telangana which had over 90% tribal population.

He added that the Telangana government reached out to the Centre with the request of increasing reservation for tribal people due to their increasing population. A resolution was passed in the assembly four years ago. "But, the Centre has not accepted this request".

The Telangana minister said the Centre does not pay enough attention to the state despite contributing greatly to the country's annual growth. "We are the fourth largest contributor to the country's GDP. The state has constructed the world's largest lift irrigation project Kaleshwaram. What has the Modi government contributed in return to Telangana in the last eight years?" he asked.

Rao is also the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) president. He is supporting the Opposition's candidate Yashwant Sinha and was in Delhi for the same. Sinha filed his nomination papers in the Parliament House on Monday. The minister further noted Sinha's candidacy is a matter of upholding the constitutional values which are under attack in the Modi regime.

He added TRS has no choice but to support Yashwant Sinha who is backed by all Opposition parties. "We are hopeful that he will be elected with the support of a lot of like-minded voters".

Speaking to the media, Rao said the BJP-led government has been abusing all constitutional offices and there is a need to stop this. He added that someone has to raise a voice against this.

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TAGS:TelanganaKT Rama RaoDroupadi MurmuBJP Presidential candidateKTR
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