NEW DELHI: Regional parties must join hands with the TDP to raise concerns over the injustice meted out by the NDA government at the Centre to states ruled by opposition parties, Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu said on Tuesday.
The TDP chief, on his first visit to the capital after his party snapped ties with the ruling NDA, said his priority was to press the Centre to give special category status to Andhra Pradesh.“Today, my priority is my state. We quit the NDA because the government was ignoring our demands. This is injustice,” Naidu, who met several opposition leaders here, said.
Among the leaders he met are NCP chief Sharad Pawar, National Conference leader Farooq Abdulla, TMC leader Saugata Roy, Jyotiraditya Scindia from the Congress and Jitender Reddy of the TRS. He is understood to have spoken to leaders from the SP, BSP, Shiv Sena, CPI(M) and the AIADMK as well.
The Chief Minister also held discussions with Hema Malini and Jayant Sinha of the BJP and leaders of some NDA allies.He pointed out that regional and Left parties had supported the TDP’s efforts in Parliament to bring in a no-trust motion.
“We are thankful to them. We need their support to pressure the Centre so that States are not ignored.” Naidu told reporters.A TDP insider said Naidu had told his party MPs that he would not “beg” for a special status to Andhra Pradesh and that there was little chance of any kind of a reconciliation with the NDA.
Naidu, who met party leaders in Parliament, also discussed the special status issue with Left leaders. “We all met. We discussed the issue of a special status for Andhra Pradesh. We also questioned the trustworthiness of the Prime Minister. We discussed how frustrating it is for Members of Parliament from Andhra Pradesh,” CPI(M) leader Mohammad Salim said after meeting Naidu.
He said the Left leaders assured Naidu of support.“We said we are all with him. We should all combine the issues and take on the government on the floor of the house rather than go to the well. He was very appreciative of that,” Salim said, adding that Naidu endorsed the proposal to move together.Naidu also had a “fruitful meeting” with Trinamool Congress leaders on the Opposition strategy followed in Parliament which helped the TDP garner support from other parties.
“Naidu thanked the TMC for its strong support to the no-confidence motion notice brought in by the TDP,” TMC MP Derek O’Brien said. Among the other issues discussed by Naidu and the leaders were the proposals of the 15th Finance Commission and coordination between like-minded parties. The Chief Minister held a dinner meeting with his party’s MPs to discuss their future course of action.