The BJP in Telangana, which is facing flak over party leader K Laxman’s remarks on Sania Mirza, has shot back at the TRS terming the appointment as an effort by CM K Chandrasekhara Rao to appease the Muslim vote.
“The appointment it seems is to appease the large Muslim vote in the city as the municipal polls are due later this year,” said N Ramachandra Rao, BJP’s national executive member and a party spokesperson.
Rao, who disapproved of the charges of his party mixing sports and politics said, “the TRS government should not have done so in first place by selecting someone on communal lines.”
Seeking to clarify his statements, Laxman told HT that he was only exposing KCR’s selective approach — denying scholarships to Seemandhra kids born in Telangana but making an outside-born Mirza the brand ambassador of the state. “KCR does not accept Seemandhraites settled here after 1956 as Telanganites. But he terms Sania as a Hyderabadi and says he is proud of her. The people elected KCR to govern them impartiality, not to indulge in appeasement of some sections,” Laxman said.
Laxman also termed the 12% reservation for Muslims as proposed by KCR as vote bank politics. The BJP leaders wanted to know why other players from the city like VVS Laxman and Saina Nehwal were not considered. Several Hyderabadis also opined that Nehwal or Laxman would have been more suitable candidates.
“Any decision by the government is bound to face opposition. Sania was selected as she is a girl with glamour and tennis has more appeal globally than cricket or badminton,” said a TRS leader.