TDP compromised on Special Category Status for Andhra Pradesh

The battle for special category status to Andhra Pradesh is being
fought at various platforms by all those who love the state, care
for its future and strongly feel that the state has been given a
raw deal by the Centre. And to make the matters worse, the state
the government headed by N Chandrababu Naidu has compromised
on it.

It was on June 2, 2014, that the new state of Telangana came into
existence. For Andhra Pradesh, this division was a double blow as
it also meant the eventual loss of its thriving capital Hyderabad.
Andhra sought Special Category Status citing the loss of
significant resources and revenue due to the division, and rightly

The then Congress government at the centre led by Manmohan
Singh promised Special Category Status to Andhra Pradesh. Even
the BJP during the course of its 2014 election campaign promised
to back the demand.

Manmohan Singh said in the Rajya Sabha that special category
status would be extended to Andhra Pradesh for five years to help
put the state on a firmer footing.
However, as time progressed this promise was forgotten. The
Congress lost the elections and the BJP very intelligently changed
its stance, with the help of the finance commission.

The YSR Congress had a very clear stand on the state’s division
right from the word go. Our party president YS Jagan Mohan
Reddy had then led a delegation to the then President Pranab
Mukherjee urging him to keep the state united.

Ever since the division of the state, the YSR Congress has been in
the forefront of the battle to get Special Category Status to
Andhra Pradesh.

And while the Congress and the BJP played a dirty game with the
state and its people, it is the Chandrababu Naidu-led TDP that is
the biggest culprit for the injustice meted out to the state.

For almost four years, Chandrababu Naidu smartly tried to play
the double game. He did nothing to ensure that the state got its
rightful due after division. On the contrary, he tried to play to the
tunes of the BJP-led NDA government. Now, as the elections
approach, the TDP is trying to enact a drama of taking a tough
stand on the issue, knowing well that the people of the state are
very angry with it.

But the people of the state will never forgive TDP for playing into
the hands of the centre and ignoring the interests of the state.

The YSR Congress has resolved to fight this injustice tooth and
nail. From the streets of Andhra Pradesh to the country’s highest
law-making body Parliament, we have raised the issue of this
injustice and will continue to do so till the people of the state get

In fact, it is our principled and persistent struggle that has forced
the TDP government to take a stand on the issue. This was
acknowledged by Prime Minister Narendra Modi while he was
replying to the debate on the No-confidence motion in Parliament.
The statement by the Prime Minister bore testimony to the fact as
to how the BJP-led government at the Centre had successfully
managed to fool the TDP till now.

Special Category Status for Andhra Pradesh is a need and not a
dole. It is a grant which the state and its people deserve for
parting away with its land and sacrificing its resources created
over the years for the new state of Telangana.

A major portion of revenue source was lost after the division as
Hyderabad happened to be a major contributor of resources to
the United State of Andhra Pradesh.

The loss of Hyderabad, which is a hub for Pharma and IT
industry, apart from a number of major public sector units like
NGRI etc. meant that the successor state of Andhra Pradesh had
to be solely dependent on agriculture to sustain its economy.

Out of the revenue generated within the state in 2012-13,
Telangana inclusive of Hyderabad had a share of 69%, whereas
the rest of Andhra had a share of 31%.

Now, contrast this with the population statistics. In terms of
population, the share of Telangana has 42% of people while
bifurcated Andhra Pradesh is home to 58% of people.

This shows how the bifurcated state of Andhra Pradesh started
with a major handicap in terms of a smaller resource base but a
higher population ratio.

Any sensible government dealing with this type of situation would
have been very careful and calculated in its spending and should
have adopted a path of fiscal prudence.

However, that was not to be. The TDP government has failed horribly on this front. It had neither the vision nor the resolve to guide the state out of this situation.

Little wonder, it is now resorting to theatrics and public posturing to cover up its failures. But the people of the state are very intelligent. They know hollow words and promises would not make up for four years of inaction.

The Congress was taught a lesson in the last elections. It is now time for the BJP and the TDP to face the people’s wrath for fooling them on the the promise of Special Category Status.

By granting Special category status to Andhra Pradesh, the
Centre will not be doing any favor to the people of the state, but
will only be giving them their rightful due.

The YSR Congress has resolved to correct this wrong and will
leave no stone unturned to ensure that the pride of Andhra
Pradesh is restored. We will ensure that the Centre can’t and
won’t ignore the welfare of our state.

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