Hyderabad: TDP national president and former chief minister N. Chandrababu Naidu appealed to the central government to confer Bharat Ratna on party founder and former chief minister late N.T. Rama Rao in recognition of his outstanding contributions to the country's political space and the film industry. Naidu made this request at NTR's 98th birth anniversary celebrations in the city.

Making his opening remarks after garlanding NTR's photo on the second day of 'Digital Mahanadu', Naidu recalled how NTR had left an unforgettable impression on the Telugu-speaking people all over the world with his achievements in cinema and politics. Born in an ordinary family, NTR rose to great heights in film and politics and became a 'Yugpurush' for everyone. The TDP Mahanadu unanimously passed a resolution on the occasion urging the Centre to confer the highest civilian award on N.T. Rama Rao.

The TDP chief said that NTR was not just one person but an institution by himself and would carry the legacy and heritage of and for Telugu people forever. His life would be an ideal example for the coming generations to emulate and achieve great things in life. NTR's name would be remembered forever in politics and the cine industry forever, Naidu said.

Naidu recalled how NTR excelled in whatever he did and did not merely act in the films but lived in characters he portrayed on screen. After entering politics, NTR introduced many programmes that met the basic needs of the disadvantaged sections of the people. He used foresight and pragmatism in making decisions to pass on benefits to the deserving.

Naidu asserted that NTR's life and career had made the average Telugu person proud. Everybody should remember NTR's contributions and draw inspiration from them to do their best possible service to the people. NTR showed to the world that power and authority were not meant for one's enjoyment but were something that should be used to render greater service to the public.

Earlier, Naidu along with TDP national general secretary Nara Lokesh and other leaders paid floral tributes at the NTR Ghat.

In a statement, Lokesh said NTR's life would be an inspiring tale of an ordinary person becoming an extraordinary leader through discipline, hard work, determination, and a never-failing sincerity. "His was a chapter that should be read daily for drawing inspiration and motivation. NTR led his life and career by imbibing the best qualities in his personality and practicing them without fail," he said.

Nara Lokesh said that NTR would remain an inspiration for him to help fellow human beings without any selfish considerations. He said that NTR was a 'Mahanayakudu' (Great Leader) who stood like a rock of support for the backward classes and weaker sections. Everybody should take inspiration from the humanist in NTR and work towards achieving an egalitarian society.

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