VIJAYAWADA: In an attempt to assuage the ruffled feelings of Kapus in the wake of arson and violence in Tuni last Sunday, Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu has announced that he would accord BC status to them after getting a report from KL Manjunath Commission in nine months.
The chief minister made the announcement at a meeting with Kapu leaders and ministers and one Kapu MP, at his office here on Tuesday.
Naidu, who expressed anguish over the violent turn that the Kapu Ikya Garjana took at Tuni in East Godavari district, said there was no need for an agitation for BC status to Kapus since at no point of time did he compromise on the issue.
He said he was keen on increasing the allocation substantially to the AP State Kapu Welfare and Development Corporation from its present Rs 100 crore in the next financial year (2016-17) and clear all the applications pending before the corporation before the end of the present financial year. He, however, did not commit himself as to how much would be the hike.
“I am aware of the fact that quite a number of Kapus were very backward, more backward than those who were given backward class status. That is the reason why I have promised them that I would include them among the BCs, during my campaign in the last general elections,” Naidu said.
The chief minister pointed out that he would take enough care to see that BCs’ interests are not affected while listing Kapus among them, which means that he would have a resolution passed in Assembly and sent to Parliament for including the proposal in the ninth schedule of the Constitution so that it would not come under the review of courts.
The chief minister underscored the need for him to do a delicate balancing act to ensure that all religions, castes and regions are on the road to development without one’s interests clashing with other’s. “If there is a repeat of Tuni, the image of Andhra Pradesh would take a hit beyond repair and we cannot afford it since it would forever seal any scope for investments from abroad,” Naidu said.
He stressed that peace and tranquility should prevail in the state and for that purpose he was addressing myriad problems that have surrounded him, one after the other. “In this critical juncture, if there is violence of the type witnessed in Tuni, it would be difficult for him to keep the state on the road to development,” he said.
Before the meeting, Naidu, Kapu leaders - Pilla Venkateswara Rao, Bandaru Satyanananda Rao, Chalamalasetty Ramanujaiah (Kapu Corporation) and MP Avanti Srinivas conferred with deputy chief minister N China Rajappa and minister P Narayana where they sought measures to ensure that no innocent Kapu youth is harassed by the police in connection with torching of Ratnachal Express. They also wanted the BC reservation to be made available to Kapus from the next academic year or at least the KL Manjunath Commission be asked to complete its work within three months.