Congress Criticises Modi Government For Not Granting Special Status To AP

NEW DELHI: Congress on Thursday night attacked the Modi government for not keeping the promise of granting special category status to Andhra Pradesh, a commitment it said was given by the UPA regime.

“Special Category Status is the Right of People of Andhra Pradesh and the commitment made by UPA Govt Prime Minister is not being kept,” senior Congress leader Digvijay Singh who is also the in charge of party affairs in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana tweeted.

The Centre on Wednesday announced a financial package for Andhra Pradesh that includes full funding of Pollavaram irrigation project, tax concessions and a special assistance, but stopped short of giving the state a special category status.

Mr Singh said that there is nothing new to what Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has promised to Andhra Pradesh.
“Nothing new in what Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has promised to AP. The excuse of Finance Commission by FM is not correct as Finance Commission has not made any such recommendation,” he tweeted.

Citing constraints placed by the 14th Finance Commission in grant of special category status to Andhra Pradesh, Mr Jaitley had said an amount equivalent to what that categorization would have fetched, would be given to the state in form of a Special Assistance Measure for five years.

Congress has been pitching for a special category status for Andhra Pradesh for long and party vice president Rahul Gandhi had also written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the same.

Andhra Pradesh, which financially suffered because of creation of separate state of Telengana in June 2014, will get a railway zone as also all cost incurred on the irrigation part of Pollavaram project from the date it was declared a National Project on April 1, 2014 will be funded by the Centre.