Taking a leave out of the electoral playbook of his his Telangana counterpart, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu on Friday (Apr 7) declared that he would appoint a Muslim a Deputy Chief Minister if the Telugu Desam Party was voted back to power in the upcoming state assembly election.
Chandrababu Naidu also promised to open an Islamic Bank exclusively for Muslims and offer interest-free loans to the community. It is yet unclear now a state CM will be able to open an Islamic issue given that such regulatory powers in issuing banking licence vests with Reserve Bank Of India.
The TDP president announced these sops to the at an election meeting at Aluru in Kurnool district.
"Today is a pious day. You all offer Namaz. You should all also resolve to vote for the TDP and I promise that I will make a Muslim a Deputy Chief Minister", PTI quoted Naidu as saying.
During his current tenure, Naidu appointed two Deputy CMs, one each from the Kapu community and backward classes. Revenue Minister K E Krishnamurthy representing the BCs and Home Minister N Chinarajappa, a Kapu, served as Deputy CMs though they were largely seen as inconsequential figureheads.
Naidu also urged the Muslims not to fall prey to the false promises of Narendra Modi government and warned if Modi comes back to power, he will conspire to deny voting rights to Muslims. He also said voting Jagan Mohan Reddy is like voting Narendra Modi.
In August last year, Naidu announced that a glorious mosque of international standards will be built in the state’s new capital Amaravati, which he claimed will be a wonderful tourist attraction. “The mosque will be built on an area of 10 acres under the supervision of the state Waqf Board”, Naidu promised. “There should be a mosque in the architectural style of Mecca Masjid (of Hyderabad) and it should become a major tourist attraction”, he had said.