HYDERABAD: Setting the stage for a direct confrontation with its ally TDP, the BJP leadership seems to have begun adopting a two-pronged strategy to make inroads in Andhra Pradesh.
On the one hand, the BJP-led Government at the Centre on Monday approved the release of `1,500 crore by way of budgetary support for the construction of the new state capital - thereby, seeking to refute the TDP claims of ‘injustice and apathy’.
On the other hand, the BJP leadership has reportedly given its nod to its AP leaders to launch ‘issue-based agitations’ against the TDP Government.
“In consonance with Section 94(3) of the AP Reorganisation Act, 2014, the Government of India has agreed to provide Special Financial Support for essential facilities for the new capital of AP, including construction of Raj Bhavan, State Secretariat, State Assembly and High Court etc,” the Centre said in an official release.
Of the `1,500 crore, `1,000 crore is meant to support essential amenities in the new capital and the remaining is to be used exclusively for the construction of Raj Bhavan, state Secretariat, Assembly and High Court.
In fact, the Union Government had sent a communique to the state government on February 21 itself stating that it was releasing `1,500 crore for the construction of the new capital.
Since then, the state government has been eagerly waiting for the funds. Interestingly, the AP government had sought `20,000 crore for the capital, at least in a phased manner.
Meanwhile, BJP president Amit Shah had a lengthy meeting with AP BJP leaders Kavuri Sambasiva Rao, Daggubati Purandeswari, Kanna Lakshminarayana, K Haribabu and Minister P Manikyala Rao in Delhi on Monday. “Our party president asked us to start undertaking agitations on the failures of the TDP Government based on people’s issues. He asked us to counter the TDP accusations that the Centre is not doing anything to AP,” a senior leader, who took part in the meeting, told Express.
Sources disclosed that Shah had asked the party leaders to hold public meetings in each district by inviting Union ministers so as to explain to the people how the Modi government was giving preferential treatment to AP.
“Our party leadership asked us to come up with a roadmap to make the party a formidable force in the state,” said another leader.