Hyderabad: A day after Jagan Mohan Reddy announced that YSR Congress Party MPs would resign if special category status was not granted to Andhra Pradesh by April 5, the pressure has shifted on to Telugu Desam Party to not cede the issue to its main opponent in the state.
In the recent Budget session, TDP MPs had ramped up the protests, both inside and outside the Parliament, but just before the second part of the Budget session from March, the YSRCP has grabbed attention by intensifying their campaign.
TDP MP Diwaker Reddy, however, denied feeling any pressure and said chief minister Chandrababu Naidu alone will decide how to take the fight forward. “YSRCP is only doing drama. Their resignation will not get special status for the state. Why did they not resign last year when they made similar announcement?" he asked.
YSRCP has announced that it will launch nation-wide protests to press for its demand of special status. On March 1, the party plans to lay siege to collector offices in all 13 districts of the state, and on March 5, the party leaders, MPs and MLAs will march to Parliament in Delhi.
"Special status is our right. We will not accept to be cheated by a special package. There is no alternative, as only special status will bring sops for rapid industrialiSation, rapid employment generation and fast rate of development in state. The Chandrababu Naidu-led government has compromised and placed their personal interests above (that of state)," Jagan said.
TDP hit back at Jagan and called the allegations against Chandrababu Naidu baseless. "We don't fear anyone. Unlike Jagan, we don't have any cases against us. We are not hungry for power. We are fighting to get all benefits for our state as promised,” senior TDP leader Somireddy Chandramohan Reddy said.
Reminding the Centre of its commitments, he added, "Finance Minister (Arun Jaitley) in 2016 said with same terms and conditions a special package will be given to AP. He said that the government will fulfil every commitment made in the Andhra Pradesh reorganization Act.”
Jaitley had categorically mentioned that the special assistance package will be equivalent to what state would have got otherwise and the amount will be released in 5 years, he said.
“We have taken up uncompromising fight in Parliament and will continue till people of Andhra get justice," Chandramohan Reddy added.