Chandrababu Naidu claims he was offered PM's post twice

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Chandrababu Naidu
Hyderabad, Feb 22: There has been many occasions where politicians have uttered flattering statements and this time around Telugu Desam Party president N Chandrababu Naidu takes the cake hands down. He claimed on Feb 21 that he had two opportunities to become the Prime Minister earlier, but turned down the offer.

Speaking to reporters in Hyderabad, Naidu was quoted as saying, "I got the opportunity to become Prime Minister of the country on two occasions (in the 1990s) but I refused. My focus is solely on Andhra Pradesh though we play an effective role at the national level."

Expressing extreme confidence of his chances to come back to power in the state, he said that he was not looking forward to a role in the national arena and added, "I may become Chief Minister again".

He also commented, "For me and TDP, Andhra Pradesh comes first. My (political) experience should benefit the state and I may become Chief Minister again." He was replying to CPI general secretary AB Bardhan's suggestion that Naidu should play a prominent role in national politics when he made the comments.

Naidu also stated, "The National Front and later the United Front were formed under our aegis and it was with TDP's support that NDA government under Atal Bihari Vajpayee had stayed in power for over six years. We had also been the largest opposition party in Lok Sabha (in 1984)".

Naidu said that irrespective of which role the TDP played at the national level, the development of Andhra Pradesh was of utmost importance. He also added how the state had made rapid strides during TDP rule and "earned international glory under us but now nobody talks about the state. That pains me immensely." He also alleged that the future of Andhra Pradesh looked gloomy now and that it was faced with a serious leadership crisis.

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