The Rajya Sabha is likely to continue the discussion, initiated on Tuesday, on the prevailing economic situation in the country, as the Parliament convenes on Day 3 of the ongoing Winter Session on Wednesday.
After megastar Chiranjeevi criticised Andhra Pradesh government for its interference in the Telugu film industry and suggested it should instead concentrate on issues like getting special status for the state, the YSRCP lashed out at the veteran film actor and the former Rajya Sabha MP.
Although Chiranjeevi is the elder brother of Jana Sena founder Pawan Kalyan, who is a staunch critic of the YSRCP, he had so far refrained from criticising the state government and instead met Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy quite a few times to resolve issues related to the Telugu film industry, popularly known as Tollywood.
However, speaking at a programme marking the 200 days of his movie “Waltair Veerayya”, he criticised the YRSCP Government saying it was using a Brahmastra against a sparrow. Instead, the government should focus on issues that would benefit the masses like welfare schemes and employment generation.
“The state government should think about special status, roads, projects, food for the poor, employment opportunities but why are you talking about the film industry sir…!” said Chiranjeevi.
The YSRCP Government’s attempt to regulate ticket prices and imposition of restrictions on shooting led to disgruntlement in the industry though the bigwigs have more or less kept quiet in public till yesterday.
Soon after Chiranjeevi criticised the YSRCP government, leaders and ministers lashed out at him questioning him about his role during the bifurcation of the state and on getting special status promised to Andhra Pradesh in the AP Reorganisation act. While former minister Kodali Nani did not name Chiranjeevi he referred to him as “pakodi” (someone insignificant) and said, “Such people in the film industry are now advising how the state government should function. It would be better if they advise their own kin to concentrate on fights, dances or action scenes and leave politics to the rest.”
Another YSRCP MLA Perni Nani said he was a fan of Chiranjeevi and went on to remind the film star that bifurcation took place when he was a union minister in the UPA government. He also wondered which party did Chiranjeevi represent when the state was denied special status?
Chiranjeevi, who enjoys immense popularity in the public as an actor and is affectionately referred to as “megastar” by his fans, had founded the Praja Rajyam Party in 2008 which won 18 MLA seats on its debut. Despite the success of his party Chiranjeevi merged his party with that of Congress in 2011 and accepted a Rajya Sabha seat. Ever since the state was bifurcated he has maintained distance from politics.