KAKINADA: YSRC president Jagan Mohan Reddy on Saturday said he could not assure reservations for Kapus if he came to power, a demand vociferously opposed by BCs. He, however, said he would compensate by doubling funds given to Kapu Corporation to take up welfare activities for the community.
“I won’t make promises that cannot be fulfilled,’’ he announced at a public meeting held as part of his Praja Sankalpa Yatra at Jaggampeta in the Kapu heartland of East Godavari district when a few youngsters holding placards demanding reservation for the community joined the crowd that had gathered.
“I won’t make any false promise. I will promise only what I can fulfil,” he asserted and added that according reservations to communities was not in the purview of the State government.
“The issue is in the hands of the Centre. There have been instances in which reservation given by States was struck down,’’ he said before alleging that Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu was notorious for reneging upon promises. “He had also promised that he would allocate `5,000 crore for the Kapu Corporation in five years, but he went back on both promises,’’ Jagan claimed.
“The Kapu Corporation will be allocated `10,000 crore (if I come to power) as it is in the purview of the State government, but I can’t assure you that I will extend reservation to Kapus,’’ the YSRC chief said.
Interestingly, Jagan’s announcement came just a few minutes after Naidu said his party was committed to extending reservations to the community. “We have passed a Bill providing reservations to Kapus as BCs and the same was sent to the Centre. Now, people should confront the BJP over the issue,’’ Naidu said.
Naidu had promised a quota for the community as a poll plank before coming to power in 2014. His failure to walk the talk has created several after agitations by the community under the leadership of former minister Mudragada Padmanabham.
Manjunatha Commission, which was set up by the Sate government to study the situation, submitted recommendations on reservations for Kapus after studying Smart Pulse Survey data, following which the government passed a resolution in the Assembly last year to extend five per cent reservation to the community in education and employment.
Jagan said Jaggampet happens to be the 100th constituency he has visited during his yatra. “This constituency voted a party candidate to the Assembly, but the person defected to the TDP claiming to have done so for the development of the constituency,’’ he jeered. “The Yeleru waters are being moved to Vizag for industrial needs. It could have been used for the irrigation needs of this constituency. Dr YS Rajsekahar Reddy initiated many developmental works here, but Naidu did not take them forward,” he claimed, alleging that the Chief Minister who had until recently said special package was better than special category status had done a U-turn to earn brownie points from voters.