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In TDP's Break-up With BJP, Naidu Opts for Step-by-Step Divorce

File photo of Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu. (Reuters)

File photo of Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu. (Reuters)

Though a majority of the leaders support severing of ties with the NDA, there is an alternative opinion which wants the party to extend the process over a period of time.

New Delhi: The soured relationship with the BJP has forced the TDP to take a call on whether to say ‘Ram-Ram’ at one go or dissociate ‘step by step’. Though an overwhelming majority of the elected representatives of the party are of the view that a decision on the issue should be initiated sooner than later, Chandrababu Naidu has decided to instead prolong the separation and opt for a step-by-step divorce. According to TDP sources, the separation 'is imminent'.

A senior TDP leader has told News18 that “outright rejection of special category Status demand by the government in the meeting of TDP MPs with Finance Minister Arun Jaitley earlier this week has precipitated the matter to some extent.”

“It is now for the party chief Chandrababu Naidu to take the call. Whatever decision we take is likely to be in the current session of Parliament,” TDP MP TG Venkatesh told News18.

The restlessness in the TDP camp is on two accounts. In the game of one-upmanship with the YSR Congress, the TDP is pre-empting any move by Jagan Mohan Reddy who has announced resignation of his Lok Sabha MPs if the demand for the special category status for Andhra is not met.

“Break-up will either be Ram-Ram in one go or step by step over of time,” said a party leader.

Though a majority of the leaders support severing of ties with the NDA, there is an alternative opinion which wants the party to extend the process over a period of time. The first step in this direction could be withdrawal of ministers from the Narendra Modi government— a decision announed by Naidu late Wednesday evening. The TDP may then ask its MPs in the Lok Sabha to resign and even if the demands are not met, the party may formally move leave the NDA.

Replying to a debate on Governor's address in the AP Assembly on Wednesday, Chief Minister Naidu reminded BJP that Prime Minister "Narendra Modi in Tirupati promised that he will cooperate for building a capital that will outsmart New Delhi."

"But with the Rs 2,500 crore they gave, is it possible to build such a capital? We need more than Rs 42,000 crore to create the required infrastructure in Amaravati," he added.