A festive atmosphere prevailed across Telangana on Wednesday as Ministers, celebrities, elected representatives and general public celebrated Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao’s birthday on a grand note.

The highlights of the day were planting one crore saplings in just an hour under the ‘Koti Vriksharchana’ call given by TRS Rajya Sabha MP J Santosh Kumar, offering a gold saree weighing about 2.5 kg sponsored by TRS leader Kuna Venkatesh Goud and Sivaramakrishna Reddy, an MLC from neighbouring Andhra Pradesh, to the presiding deity at Balkampet Yellamma temple and releasing Godavari water from the scenic Ranganayaka Sagar in Siddipet district for Yasangi crops by Finance Minister T Harish Rao for the first time since the project’s inauguration last year.

The day also saw Ministers, legislators and several organisations taking up distribution of food, fruit and clothes to the poor while others participated in blood donation and health camps, among various other social service activities.

Meanwhile, it was a virtual flood of birthday wishes for Chandrashekhar Rao from various quarters of the country. Vice-President M Venkaiah Naidu, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla, Union Ministers, Governors and Chief Ministers of different States, MPs and legislators from neighbouring AP wished the Chief Minister with a long and healthy life. Celebrities, including actors, activists, business heads, diplomats and sportspersons, and TRS units functioning in different countries also greeted the architect of Telangana State.

A tweet by TRS working president and MA&UD Minister KT Rama Rao, perhaps, reflects best the sentiments of the people towards Chandrashekhar Rao. “To a warrior who fought against all odds to make Telangana state a reality; To a leader who was an awe inspiring agitator & now a fabulous administrator; To a living legend who epitomises the word Visionary; To a man I am privileged to call my Father, #HappyBirthdayKCR Garu (sic),” Rama Rao’s tweet said.

The ‘Koti Vriksharchana’ programme received huge response from various quarters with more than one crore saplings planted across the State between 10 am and 11 am. Chandrashekhar Rao himself planted a ‘Rudraksh’ sapling in the presence of Santosh Kumar. The TRS cadres, including Ministers, elected representatives and public and private organisations along with individuals, planted saplings in large numbers. 

The TRS NRI wing also took part in the plantation programme apart from taking up social service activities in 50 countries across the world.

Animal Husbandry Minister Talasani Srinivas Yadav organised massive birthday celebration at Jal Vihar, where a 30-minute 3D video on the Chief Minister highlighting his life journey was released by Assembly Speaker Pocharam Srinivas Reddy and Council Chairman Gutha Sukhender Reddy. A 67-kg cake marking the 67th birthday of the Chief Minister was also cut during the celebrations.

“I thank everyone who wished me on my birthday. I sincerely wish and want your love and affection to continue forever,” the Chief Minister said in a message later.

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