Home / Politics / Policy /  Andhra Pradesh, Telangana MPs set to step up protest against centre

Hyderabad: After Andhra Pradesh (AP), the centre might find itself facing heat from Telangana MPs in Parliament as well over issues similar to the ones that AP lawmakers have been protesting, including development funding and bifurcation promises. On Monday, when the budget session resumes, the main opposition YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) in AP will hold a protest at Parliament Street in New Delhi demanding special category status (SCS) for the state.

Last Saturday, the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) led by K. Chandrashekhar Rao held a parliamentary meeting with its MPs, after which his daughter, Nizamabad MP Kalvakuntla Kavitha, tweeted that the TRS will raise the demand for states to be allowed to decide on reservation quotas and promises made during the state’s division.

“If required we will protest as well. In spite of repeated requests and extending cooperation there is no reciprocation (from the centre)," TRS Lok Sabha MP (from Bhongir constituency) B. Narsaiah said. He added that his party MPs might join hands with Andhra Pradesh MPs in their protests if the latter are open to it.

On Monday, the YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) will stage a dharna in which all of its 44 MLAs and five MPs along with about 2,000 party workers will participate, demanding special category status (SCS) for Andhra Pradesh.

“After Monday, our party MPs will continue to protest in parliament," said YSRCP MLA G. Srikanth Reddy. He added that the YSRCP is ready to join hands with the TDP in this protest. “We have called for protesting together, and are ready to fight with anyone in interest of the state," Reddy stated.

Apart from the YSRCP, the centre will also face the ruling Telugu Desam Party (TDP) which has also decided to continue its ‘fight’ to ensure that all the promises made to AP during its bifurcation from Telangana in 2014 are fulfilled. It has given 5 March (Monday) as an ultimatum for action by the central government.

On its part, the TDP has decided to stick to its demands, which was decided at a meeting held with all of its MPs and other leaders on 2 March in Amaravati. “The centre has to fulfil all the 19 pending issues as per the AP Reorganization Act (2014)," TDP MP Kesineni Srinivas said.

Kesineni added that party president and AP chief minister N. Chandrababu will be apprised on the developments on Monday for further decisions to be taken.

Cracks have appeared in the alliance between the TDP and BJP, with Naidu stating in January that he is ready to call leave the alliance if the BJP did not want to continue due to constant criticism from the AP BJP unit leaders.

Post that, the TDP expressed displeasure over the Union Budget 2018, stating that “injustice" was meted out to AP. A senior TDP functionary, who did not want to be named, said that at the committee meeting last week it was almost decided to come out of the National Democratic Alliance’s (NDA) fold.

“But our (AP) chief minister received a call from New Delhi after which he decided to watch the developments in the coming days, based on which further decisions will be taken. If the centre does give AP something more, our stance will change. So we have to wait and watch," he added.

Political analyst Palwai Raghavendra Reddy said that Rao has been stating in the last two years that Telangana has been contributing a lot to India’s overall gross domestic product, but it has not been receiving enough in return from the centre. “KCR (as Rao is known) now probably sees that Modi is on a weaker wicket, given recent by-poll results in north India. So it is a political move as well from his side," he added.

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