'If KCR Tries to Arrest Me, His Government Will Fall': Chandrababu Naidu to NDTV

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Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu speaks to NDTV

New Delhi:  The political slugfest between Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu and Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao over the cash-for-votes scam intensified on Tuesday with Mr Naidu saying it will be end of KCR's regime if he tries to arrest him.

"If he does like that (tries to arrest me) then it will be the last day for his government," Mr Naidu told NDTV in Delhi.

KCR's Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) has accused Mr Naidu of playing a role in the alleged bribery attempt by Revanth Reddy, a legislator of his Telugu Desam Party (TDP), to Elvis Stephenson, a nominated MLA, to influence his vote in the state legislative council elections.

A TV channel in Telangana, TNews, aired an audio recording on Sunday of what it alleges is a conversation between Mr Naidu and Mr Stephenson. TNews is at least partly owned by the family of KCR.

Mr Naidu told NDTV that the tapes and phone conversation are doctored and questioned the role of KCR and his use of police to intimidate him and his party legislators.

"Either he has taped my conversation, or his channel has, or it is fabricated. Why should I answer for it?" he asked.

Mr Naidu alleged that the Telangana chief minister has started mudslinging and attacking him despite a number of efforts by him to reach out and have cordial relations between the two neighbouring states.

"We are two states now. Both for Telugu people. I have said in the past that we must cooperate with each other for an overall development of the states," he said.

He went on to attack the Telangana chief minister of horse-trading and said he is not interested in an MLA or MLC from Telangana as he had the numbers unlike KCR who has been breaking his TDP party and taking his MLAs and even making them a minister.

Mr Naidu said he will be meeting his friends in the capital and will ask them to intervene in his favour. The Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister will meet the Prime Minister, President and the BJP president on Wednesday and ask them to ensure the primacy of the role of the Governor in the common state capital Hyderabad.

He also made a subtle attack on the Governor asking him why he allowed a legislator from his party to become a minister but stopped short of seeking his removal.

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