Naidu Back To CEO Mode, Pampering Babus
Amaravati: Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu is known for his pro-officers style of functioning. He had pampered the officials more during his earlier stints and had not given a chance to the party leaders to raise their voices against the officials. The officers, who enjoyed the patronage of the Chief Minister turned deaf ears to the elected representatives, including the Ministers between 1995 and 2004. The MLAs and MPs had to wait for appointments of the Collectors and other senior officers and were at their mercy to get things done in the respective Assembly constituencies. Even the Thahasildars had their say given priority over that of the MLAs, when it came to developmental activities in the villages. He projected himself as the CEO of the State rather than the Chief Minister of the State.
When the party lost in the 2004, this CEO style had come in for an open attack from the rank and file of the party. The disappointed leaders did not rush to the support of Naidu, while the all powerful officers had no chance to back him. He thus lost the 2004 elections. The internal reviews on the party’s debacle afterwards turned external as every leader blamed Naidu for his style. They wanted him to change this CEO style and respect the leaders. He had admitted his fault too and perhaps that was the reason why he, at the first meeting of the Collectors after his taking over, wanted the bureaucrats to be available to the party leaders.
However, two-and-a-half years in office, Naidu seems to have got into his original style of being the CEO of the State. This attitude of Naidu is now under scan by the party leaders who have been facing the heat from the bureaucrats. Senior legislator G Syamsunder Sivaji was denied audience by Praveen Kumar, the then Commissioner of Greater Visakha Municipal Corporation. He was again denied entry into the Chief Minister’s residence road when he was on his way to the Assembly last month
Similar charges are there against former Prakasam district Collector Sujatha Sarma, former Chittoor Collector Siddharth Jain, former Guntur Collector Kantilal Dande, former Krishna district Collector Babu Ahmad and former East Godavari district Collector Kartikeya Misra. It is alleged that these officers deny interviews for the legislators and TDP leaders in the name of video conference with the Chief Minister. “Whenever approached, the officers say that they are in video conference with the Chief Minister,” quipped a senior leader expressing his displeasure over the style of functioning of the Chief Minister.