TDP unhappy with Union budget allocations for Andhra, hints at quitting NDA
TDP MPs complained that the Union Budget 2018 was thoroughly disappointing and none of the promises made in the AP Reorganisation Act found any mention in the budget.Updated: Feb 02, 2018 12:10 IST
Telugu Desam Party, the second largest alliance partner of the Bharatiya Janata Party in National Democratic Alliance (NDA), on Thursday expressed “serious” displeasure over allocations for Andhra Pradesh in Union budget 2018 and hinted at “taking a crucial decision” (on continuing in the NDA) soon.
Soon after the presentation of the budget by finance minister Arun Jaitley, TDP president and Andhra Pradesh chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu had a teleconference with his party MPs, who assembled at the residence of Union minister of state for science and technology YS Chowdary in Delhi.
The MPs complained that the budget was thoroughly disappointing and none of the promises made in the AP Reorganisation Act found any mention in the budget. There was no mention of the promised railway zone for Visakhapatnam nor was there any reference to allocations for the construction of the new capital Amaravati, the MPs told Naidu.
“We are going to declare war... We have three options – 1 is to try and continue, 2 is our MPs resign and 3 is breaking of alliance. (we) Will decide in meeting with CM on Sunday,” ANI quoted party MP TG Venkatesh as saying in New Delhi on Friday.
Chowdary had told media persons that Naidu called for an emergency meeting of the TDP MPs at Vijayawada on February 4 to decide on the future course of action. “The budget was totally disappointing. We will take a right decision at the MPs’ meeting on Sunday. We are ready for any sacrifice,” the minister said, indicating the possibility of the TDP pulling out of the NDA.
Srikakulam MP K Rammohan Naidu said it was unfortunate that despite repeated representations given by Naidu to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and several Central ministers seeking help for Andhra Pradesh, the Centre had given a “step-motherly” treatment to the state.
Anakapalli MP Avanti Srinivas said the Centre had allocated meagre funds for educational institutions mentioned in the bifurcation act and ignored the demand for a railway zone for Visakhapatnam. “We are disappointed,” said Anantapur MP JC Diwakar Reddy.
In the evening, Naidu held a meeting with his cabinet colleagues at Amaravati and reportedly sought their opinion on continuing in the alliance with the BJP. “Since this was the last full-fledged budget before the next elections, we expected that the Centre would be liberal in extending assistance to the state. But what it gave us was peanuts,” state agriculture minister S Chandramohan Reddy said.
He said the TDP would take a crucial decision in a couple of days in the best interest of the state.