Hyderabad, Jan 18 (IANS) Family members and leaders of the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) founded by N.T. Rama Rao remembered him on his 23rd death anniversary on Friday.
Popularly called NTR, the former Chief Minister, was an actor-turned-politician and one of the most popular leaders in the history of undivided Andhra Pradesh.
NTR’s son and popular actor N. Balakrishna, daughter N. Bhuvaneswari, grandsons and actors Junior NTR and Kalyan Ram and others paid rich tributes to the late leader at NTR Ghat on the banks of the Hussain Sagar lake here.
Balakrishna, who played NTR in the just released biopic “Mahanaaikudu”, was accompanied by the film’s director Krish. Speaking on the occasion, the actor said NTR would always remain in the hearts of the Telugu people.
He also garlanded the statue of NTR in Begumpet area and flagged off the NTR Amar Jyothi rally. Balakrishna recalled the steps taken by NTR for the welfare of the backward and weaker sections of society.
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister and TDP President N. Chandrababu Naidu, who is NTR’s son-in-law, also remembered the veteran leader.
During a teleconference with TDP leaders in Amaravati on Friday, Naidu said NTR continued to be an inspiration for the young generation. Terming NTR as the pioneer of welfare schemes, Naidu said poverty alleviation would be the best tribute to the late leader.
The Chief Minister also called upon the TDP cadres to rededicate themselves to the ideals of NTR by serving the people. He later left for Guntur district, where he will unveil a 36 feet tall statue of NTR.
NTR died of cardiac arrest in 1996, a few months after Naidu ousted him from power in view of the alleged growing interference by his second wife Lakshmi Parvathi in the party and the administration.
NTR, a popular Telugu actor, had launched the TDP in 1982 with the slogan of Telugu self-respect and created a record of sorts by coming to power within nine months, ending the single party rule of the Congress.