Chandrababu Naidu takes out protest march over Andhra special status, meets President
N Chandrababu Naidu to lead TDP legislators in a protest march in Delhi demanding special status for Andhra Pradesh.Updated: Feb 12, 2019 14:13 IST
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu took out a protest march in Delhi demanding special status for his state. All the MPs, MLAs and MLCs of his Telugu Desam Party (TDP) will take part in the march that began from the Andhra Pradesh Bhavan and ended at Jantar Mantar.
Naidu has alleged that the Narendra Modi government has gone back on its promise and also from the commitment made by the previous regime during the passage of the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014. The law provided for bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh and creation of Telangana as a separate state.
Following the protest march, the Andhra Pradesh chief minister and TDP legislators met President Ram Nath Kovind at the Rashtrapati Bhavan and submitted a memorandum seeking special status for Andhra Pradesh. Naidu. The memorandum to President Kovind talks about the status of implementation of assurances made in the parliament during the passing of the state reorganisation legislation.
Naidu had staged a dharna on Monday at the Andhra Pradesh Bhavan to press for his long-standing demand. His day-long hunger-strike a day ago turned out to be a rallying point for the opposition parties in Delhi as leaders from nearly two dozen political parties, including Congress president Rahul Gandhi, visited him to express solidarity.
Among those who supported Naidu’s demand for special status for Andhra Pradesh was BJP’s ally Shiv Sena, whose Sanjay Raut said he was “told” by the party chief Uddhav Thackeray to visit the Andhra Pradesh chief minister at his dharna site. The development comes amid attempts by the BJP to reach out to the Shiv Sena, which is apparently not happy with the ruling party at the Centre and Maharashtra.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, disgruntled BJP leader Shatrughan Sinha, former prime ministers Manmohan Singh and HD Deve Gowda, NCP president Sharad Pawar, TMC leader Derek O’Brien and former Finance Minister Yashwant Sinha also visited Naidu, who has been campaigning against the BJP-led government for past several months.
Naidu’s TDP was part of the ruling NDA till mid-March 2018, when he pulled out of the alliance citing “neglect” of Andhra Pradesh by the Narendra Modi government. Naidu had held Prime Minister Narendra Modi “responsible” for the political fallout saying that he flew to the national capital “29 times” but nothing could be gained for the state.
Naidu and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee have been trying to form an opposition unity ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, likely to be held in April-May this year. Banerjee is scheduled to hold a two-day dharna in Delhi beginning Wednesday and Thursday. Both Banerjee and Naidu have alleged that the Modi government has launched an “attack on federalism”
First Published: Feb 12, 2019 09:49 IST