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Bleak chances of spl status for AP

Bleak chances of spl status for AP
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Naidu, however, sought to apostle the blame on the previous Congress-led UPA government for the road blocks that the NDA government is facing in granting special category status to AP.

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Union Minister Venkaiah Naidu says it is difficult to achieve

Hyderabad: The Union Minister for Rural Development, M Venkaiah Naidu, who had insisted on according special category status to Andhra Pradesh for a period of 10 years in Rajya Sabha when the AP State Reorganisation Bill was taken up for discussion, now says that giving that the status to the residuary state of AP is difficult.

Speaking to media persons in Kakinada on Friday, he observed that it was not an easy task to grant the special category status. The issue needs to be discussed by the National Development Council (NDC) and approved by all the participant states. “There is no unanimity among all the states on this issue. In fact after the announcement for special status category for AP was made, many other states put up similar demands. Hence it is a difficult task,” he said.

To a query, Naidu said that if the NDC was convened in a hurry to discuss this issue, there was every possibility that it may be rejected. Hence, he said, the government was treading the issue carefully. The government would first elicit opinion from all the states and prepare necessary ground for it and then put it before the NDC, seeking its clearance to grant special status, informed.

Naidu, however, sought to apostle the blame on the previous Congress-led UPA government for the road blocks that the NDA government is facing in granting special category status to AP. He said the Congress government had announced its decision to grant special status to AP after the bifurcation of state without any modalities in the AP Reorganisation act. Hitherto Naidu had been maintaining that there was no confusion on the issue of special category status to AP and that the residuary state would be accorded the status even as the TS Assembly adopted a resolution seeking identical status. He had also said that the new government at the Centre would give special status to Andhra Pradesh, which now needed a new capital and was facing many developmental challenges.

This assurance of Venkaiah Naidu lends credence to a Planning Commission spokesperson’s statement that no decision had been taken on the special category status to Andhra Pradesh.

The Centre during the just concluded winter session of Parliament told said in Lok Sabha that neither Andhra Pradesh nor Telangana met the criteria for according the special status. It also said that there had been similar demands from Telangana, Odisha, Rajasthan, Jharkhand, Bihar and Chhattisgarh. For getting the status, a State has to be in hilly and difficult terrain, should have low population density, should have strategic location along international borders, and suffer from economic backwardness and non-viable State finances.

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