Tributes paid to N.T. Rama Rao on death anniversary


Hyderabad : Rich tributes were paid to former Andhra Pradesh chief minister and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) founder N.T. Rama Rao on his 14th death anniversary while his daughter and central minister D. Purandareswari demanded Bharat Ratna for him.

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Family members of the film actor-turned-politician paid floral tributes to him at NTR Ghat on the banks of Hussain Sagar Lake here.

TDP chief and NTR’s son-in-law N. Chandrababu Naidu, son N. Harikrishna, grandson Junior NTR and other family members visited NTR Ghat.

NTR’s daughter and union minister of state D. Purandareswari and her husband D. Venkateswara Rao also visited the Ghat separately. The couple belonging to the Congress party urged the central government to confer Bharat Ratna, the country’s highest civilian honour, on NTR posthumously.

Lakshmi Parvathi, second wife of NTR, also visited the Ghat to pay her tributes. She broke down while laying wreaths. Later talking to reporters, she said those who ‘back stabbed’ NTR could never live in peace.

NTR, who had created a record by coming to power within nine months after launching TDP in early 1980s and ending the Congress party’s monopoly in state politics, died in 1996, five months after Naidu dethroned him.

Parvathi, who married NTR a few months before the 1994 polls, went into political oblivion after his death.

Naidu, who continued as chief minister till 2004, recalled that NTR fought for the self-respect of Telugus and changed the course of state and country’s politics. “We are observing his death anniversary as Telugu self-respect day,” he said.

Naidu also flagged off a rally by TDP workers in the state capital. TDP leaders and workers across the state paid tributes to the party founder.

Harikrishna, TDP leader and member of Rajya Sabha, said TDP would continue to fight for the self-respect of Telugus. “He may be physically not amidst us but his ideals will continue to guide and inspire us,” he said.