Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu on Tuesday said it was the responsibility of all political parties in Parliament to undo the injustice done to Andhra Pradesh in the matter of its bifurcation.
“The Bharatiya Janata Party has a larger responsibility in this regard. All parties should come to the rescue of Andhra Pradesh as they had contributed to its bifurcation by supporting the AP Reorganisation Bill (in 2014),” Chandrababu said.
He was referring to the stalemate in Rajya Sabha for the last two days over the private member’s bill, moved by Congress member K V P Ramachandra Rao seeking special category status to AP.
“I have asked the TDP MPs to do everything to safeguard the interests of the state,” he said, stating that his party was hence supporting the private member’s bill. “I want all parties in Parliament to ensure that the AP Reorganisation Act-2014 be implemented in true spirit,” Chandrababu said.
“I raised this issue at the Inter-State Council meet on July 16 and reminded the Chief Ministers of all states about the irrational bifurcation. Not only was injustice done to AP but we were insulted. I asked them to undo the injustice as all parties were responsible for the division,” the Chief Minister said at a press conference here this afternoon.
He wanted expeditious implementation of all the provisions of Reorganization Act and assurances made by the then Prime Minister on the floor of Rajya Sabha, the most important among them being grant of special category status.
The execution of Polavaram as a national irrigation project, extension of special financial support for construction of new Capital, sanction of railway zone at Visakhapatnam, special package for development of backward regions, provision of tax incentives for rapid industrialisation and release of balance grant to bridge the resource gap were some of the other demands he raised.
Referring to a book written by former Union Minister Jairam Ramesh, in which he admitted to the “mistakes” made by the Congress party in the bifurcation, Chandrababu wanted those mistakes to be rectified.
“All parties were party to it as they let the Reorganisation Bill pass by voice vote in Parliament,” he noted. “What else can we do except build pressure (on the Centre) day by day? We have to fight. We can only hope it happens,” the Chief Minister said, when asked about the special status to AP.
“We sought handholding support from the Centre till we grow on par with other states in south India. Why should we face the problems which no other state has,” he questioned.
The 14th Finance Commission did not grant anything extra special to AP.
“We will still be a (revenue) deficit state even at the end of the 14th Finance Commission’s term. Hence we are asking the Centre to bridge this deficit,” he added.