Andhra Pradesh Roiled by Anger Over Denial of Special Category Status

Andhra Pradesh Roiled by Anger Over Denial of Special Category Status

He was in Parliament till the afternoon and also participated in a demonstration outside Parliament House against the Punjab National Bank fraud involving fugitive jewellers Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi. "It is my belief that if the opposition stands united on this issue, we can force the BJP Govt to do justice to the people of Andhra", wrote Gandhi on Twitter, with a video and the hashtag "INCStandsWithAndhra". "It's the first thing we will do after coming to power in 2019", he told a group of party workers who protested at Jantar Mantar demanding special status for Andhra Pradesh. "We are for special category status of Andhra", Gandhi said.

A senior TDP leader said Mr. Naidu may not take a hasty decision but would wait for an official statement from the Union Finance Ministry and the feedback given by the party's team that spoke to Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in Delhi on its return on Wednesday. At the time, special status was promised to Andhra Pradesh for foregoing Hyderabad and the eventual status to grant it was announced in Parliament and endorsed by political parties including BJP. Unusually, the Governor's address went on to expose the Centre for its failure to extend a helping hand to the state.

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YSRCP Rajya Sabha MP V. Vijayasai Reddy charged N. Chandrababu Naidu-led Telugu Desam Party (TDP), saying: "Under what moral right did Chandrababu Naidu sell Andhra Pradesh's interest by trading special status for the so-called "special package" - details of which are unknown?"

CPI (Andhra Pradesh) Secretary K Rama Krishna said, "They have announced their own protest". The leaders were taken to Parliament Street Police Station.

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Members from TDP, YSR Congress, Left parties and the Congress were present at the protest. Stating this as the reason, the central government denied special category status to AP and instead, assured "special assistance" by promising a "special package" in 2016, to be valid from 2015 to 2020.

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