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Join mainstream, CM appeals to naxals

By Our Staff Reporter

HYDERABAD, FEB. 9. "Violence cannot put a stop to development," the Chief Minister, N. Chandrababu Naidu has said, reiterating his appeal to naxalites of the People's War to give up their armed struggle and join the mainstream.

He was addressing a gathering consisting predominantly of leaders and workers of the ruling Telugu Desam Party (TDP) at a meeting on Mahatma Gandhi Road in Secunderabad. The meeting was the culmination of a rally from the Buddha Bhavan, protesting against the increasing attacks of the People's War on the TDP rank and file. Earlier, he garlanded the statue of the Mahatma.

He condemned Sunday morning's incident in Anantapur district in which three of the party's leaders, including the Anantapur MP in the dissolved Lok Sabha, K. Srinivasulu, and the district general secretary, S. Salar Basha, narrowly escaped attack by the PW, using directional mines, similar to the ones used in last October's attack on the Chief Minister at Alipiri. He recalled other instances when the PW had targeted and killed party leaders. "Why should the PW target us? Is working to help better the lot of the poor a crime?" He urged PW cadres to give up arms and fight for what they thought was right, but by joining the mainstream of society. He reiterated that the violence was not helping anybody at all. Among others who participated in the rally and addressed the gathering included the Mayor, T. Krishna Reddy, Ministers, T. Srinivas Yadav (Tourism) and K. Vijayarama Rao (Commercial Taxes), C. Ramachandraiah, TDP spokesman, MLAs in the dissolved Assembly, Sayanna and Sripathi Rajeshwar.

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