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Naidu holds last Cabinet meet for this term

After getting the nod from the Election Commission, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu held a cabinet meeting on the drinking water crisis and drought conditions. This was the last cabinet meeting held by Naidu in his current tenure, as a new government would be formed after May 23, when the results of the Assembly elections would be announced.
 
If Naidu’s Telugu Desam Party would come to power for a second term, Naidu will be able conduct cabinet meetings again. Else, the meeting held on Tuesday will be the last official meeting held by Naidu. There has been a lot of discussion among the political and bureaucratic circles on the validity of the cabinet meeting when the model code of conduct was in force. 
 
While some said that cabinet meetings cannot be held when the poll code was being implemented, others said Naidu was insisting on the meeting only to satisfy his ego. 
 
There was a lot of discussion among the intelligentsia in the political circles. Chief Secretary L.V. Subrahmanyam, whose appointment on April 6, had been a bone of contention between Naidu and the Election Commission, attended the cabinet meeting and exchanged pleasantries with Naidu.  
 
Subrahmanyam’s appointment as the Chief Secretary of the state was mired in a controversy as Naidu said that he was an accused in the disproportionate assets case filed on Opposition leader and YSR C Congress president Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy.  
 
All the officials of the departments concerned and Naidu’s cabinet colleagues took part in the meeting. Originally, Naidu proposed to hold the meeting on May 10 but the poll panel did not grant permission to him. Later, Naidu sent another letter to the EC along with the agenda points and the panel gave its approval, with many riders.
 
The EC said that the meeting should be confined only to the points in the agenda such as steps being taken for mitigation of drinking water crisis, drought conditions in the state, implementation of employment guarantee scheme and damage caused by cyclonic storm Fani. The panel also told Naidu that there should be no media briefing after the meet.
 
According to sources, the cabinet meeting discussed steps being taken to mitigate drinking water crisis, particularly in Rayalaseema districts. The officials told those who attended the meeting about the contingency measures being taken in those areas. Several horticultural crops, it is learnt that have wilted due to lack of irrigation facility in several districts.
 
The disaster management authorities told the CM that Fani caused crop and property loss worth Rs. 58 crore in Srikakulam, Vizianagaram and Visakhapatnam districts. Assessment is still underway, officials told the CM. Naidu is learnt to have thanked the officials for cooperating with the TDP government in the last five years and hoped he would get another opportunity to work with them again.

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