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TDP chief behind faction violence: Congress

By Our Special Correspondent

HYDERABAD, AUG. 19. The Congress has accused the Telugu Desam Party of encouraging, promoting and sustaining faction violence during its nine years of rule at the behest of its president, N. Chandrababu Naidu.

`Vilification campaign'

Addressing a press conference here on Thursday, E. Pratap Reddy, secretary of the CLP, Samineni Udayabhanu, Government Whip and G.Muddukrishnama Naidu, V.Vasanthakumar and Malreddy Ranga Reddy, MLAs, accused the TDP of launching a vilification campaign against the Congress to cover up its misdeeds.

The TDP leaders, who got killed 457 Congress workers between 1995-2004, were now owning up every victim of faction violence or vendetta killing as their follower, they said. The TDP's faction-agenda was only given a fillip by Mr.Naidu on Thursday during the party's "protest rally" in which he warned the Congress of severe repercussions. Congresmen would not be cowed down by such threats, they said urging Mr.Naidu to observe restraint.

Listing the victims of the TDP, the CLP members asked whether it was not true that 18 Congressmen had been killed by the ROC, an organisation allegedly encouraged by Paritala Ravindra, in the past.

`No Congress hand'

The Congress leaders reiterated that their leaders had no hand in the faction killings that were taking place over personal and property disputes. Rejected by the people and dejected over losing power, Mr.Naidu was spreading falsehood, they added.

They said if Mr.Naidu was really interested in halting the faction killings, his party stop politicising every murder for gaining public sympathy.

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