A delegation of MPs from the YSR Congress Party on Tuesday met President Ram Nath Kovind at Rashtrapati Bhavan in Delhi, seeking his intervention to push the Centre to grant special category status to Andhra Pradesh. The parliamentarians submitted a letter by party chief Jagan Mohan Reddy to the president.
Andhra Pradesh “has been under utter neglect” as the promises made by the Centre and the assurances given on the floor of Parliament as pre-conditions before the state was bifurcated have not been kept, Reddy wrote in the letter. “The ruling Telugu Desam Party government in Andhra Pradesh, being a [former] coalition partner in the National Democratic Alliance Cabinet, did not pursue the matter,” he claimed.
He stressed that Andhra Pradesh would not survive with the Rs 2.2 crore debt it had accrued since its bifurcation without special status. “Andhra Pradesh is reeling through a very difficult phase, with no trace of development, and hence special category status alone will put Andhra Pradesh on the path of development,” the YSR Congress Party chief wrote.
“All our efforts to impress upon the government the dire need to grant special category status to Andhra Pradesh have gone unheeded,” Reddy said. He added that 13 no-confidence motions against the government could not be taken up in Parliament during the Budget Session, which concluded on April 6, “under the pretext that the House was not in order”.
The YSR Congress Party leader urged the president to intervene in the matter to ensure that people do not “lose confidence in the overall democratic process” and to honour the highest values of the Indian parliamentary democracy.
The Telugu Desam Party and the Opposition YSR Congress Party are demanding special category status for Andhra Pradesh, saying it has lost a major source of revenue after losing Hyderabad to Telangana. In protest against the Centre’s refusal to grant the special status, ministers of the Telugu Desam Party resigned from the Union Cabinet last month and the party pulled out of the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance.