With almost all the political parties and organisations, particularly YSR Congress party, raising the pitch for Special Category Status to Andhra Pradesh, Telugu Desam Party president and Andhra Pradesh chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu has gone on the defensive.
The demand for SCS has now become a flash point in Andhra politics as YSRC president Y S Jaganmohan Reddy announced that his party MPs would resign from their seats if the Centre did not grant special category status to AP by April 6.
On the other hand, the Congress and Jana Sena Party of actor Pawan Kalyan, too, took up the SCS as the main political agenda. Going by this trend, the SCS might even become a major election issue in 2019 assembly polls.
However, Naidu cannot take up the SCS now, as he had already declared it as a closed chapter and said he had accepted the special financial package in lieu of special category status because the Centre had promised to extend all the benefits to the state which would have otherwise come to AP under SCS.
Unfortunately, neither the status was given nor did the package materialise fully, much to the embarrassment of Naidu.
Now that he cannot go back to the demand for SCS, Naidu has asked his party leaders to propagate extensively on the special package and tell the people that there is no difference between the SCS and package.
“We need to take this message effectively into the people and remove the myth of SCS,” he told the party leaders at the coordination committee meeting on Thursday.
He expressed dissatisfaction over his party leaders for failing to refute the negative propaganda by the YSRC.
He told them to take into people the message that the TDP’s interest in continuing in the NDA so far was only to get the maximum benefits to the state.
“I had been to Delhi 29 times not for my personal gains but for the welfare of the state. This you should convey to the people,” he said.