Andhra Pradesh Roiled by Anger Over Denial of Special Category Status

Andhra Pradesh Roiled by Anger Over Denial of Special Category Status

The TDP had two ministers in the Modi government: Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju and Minister for State for Science and Technology YS Chowdary. TDP supremo and Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu announced the decision at 10:45 pm on Wednesday. At that time, special category state concept did exist. He later tweeted: "It is my belief that if the opposition stands united on this issue, we can force the BJP government to do justice to the people of Andhra". "The special status used to be originally granted to states in the North-East because they have their own resources that were inadequate", said Jaitley.

The only benefit that remained for a "special category state" was the benefit of assistance for externally aided projects (90 percent grant from Centre).

Naidu has blamed the Centre of not fulfiling the promises made to Andhra Pradesh under the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act. TDP leaders have been vociferous over the special category status issue since Jaitley presented the Budget on February 1.

Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday met with protesting MPs of the Telugu Desam Party that had been demanding a Special Status for Andhra Pradesh, as was promised during the time of its bifurcation in 2014.

Andhra Pradesh chief minister Chandrababu Naidu.


— Andhra Pradesh CM
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Jaitley said giving special category status, as demanded by Naidu, to any state apart from those in the North-East and three hill provinces was not constitutionally possible after the implementation of the 14th Finance Commission recommendations. "We have to look at the country as a whole", Mr Jaitley said.

Rama Krishna said the Centre has been dragging on its feet on honouring the commitment of granting the special category status since 2014, when Andhra Pradesh was divided and Telangana was formed.

"Andhra Pradesh in the special package will receive the same benefits that of a special state category", added Jaitley.

In a press conference that lasted a little less than an hour, Naidu virtually accused the Modi government of insulting him and betraying the people of Andhra Pradesh.

Clarifying the provision of tax and revenue deficit, Jaitley stated that tax concessions were already given in the first two years, along with provision for revenue deficit as per the Finance Commission.

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